Attributed to JUDAS ULLULAQ (1937-1999) UQSUQTUUQ (GJOA HAVEN)
Muskox Tossing Wolf, c. mid 1980s
whale bone and black inlay, 2.75 x 2 x 3.75 in (7 x 5.1 x 9.5 cm)
Estimate: $600 — $900
a Montreal Collection.
Our attribution is based on both the subject matter and the style of this delightful small sculpture. Among Ullulaq’s works there are several examples of muskoxen tossing or throwing hunters, if not wolves specifically (see references). On the stylistic side, the very distinctive shape of the muskox’s hump definitely resembles the humps of numerous muskoxen carved by Ullulaq (see additional references). The use of whale bone and careful black inlay are further clues.
References: For contemporaneous examples of Ullulaq muskoxen tossing hunters see Darlene Coward Wight, Art & Expression of the Netsilik (WAG, 2000), cat. 156; and Susan Gustavison, Northern Rock: Contemporary Inuit Stone Sculpture (Kleinburg: McMichael, 1999), cat. 62. For muskoxen with similarly shaped humps see Ingo Hessel, Arctic Spirit (Douglas & McIntyre/Heard Museum, 2006) cat. 85; George Swinton, Sculpture of the Inuit (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1992), fig. 899; and Upstairs Gallery, Judas Ooloolah (Ullulaq) Gjoa Haven (Canadian Arctic Producers, 1987), cats. 6, 11.