ANDY MIKI (1918-1983) ARVIAT/TIKIRAQJUAQ (ESKIMO POINT/WHALE COVE)
Animal, c. 1965-67
stone, 7.25 x 3 x 3.25 in (18.4 x 7.6 x 8.3 cm)
Estimate: $4,000 — $6,000
This wonderful sculpture probably represents a siksik (Arctic ground squirrel). The animal was one of Miki's favourite subjects; although with Miki's later works it becomes more difficult to distinguish species, we suspect he continued to carve them regularly. This charming Arctic denizen certainly sums up this artist's whimsical sculptural style and apparent spirit, but we should remember that Miki was as serious and dedicated as anyone. In the words of Norman Zepp, "…these works are remarkable statuesque and one must ultimately take them seriously" . Animal, with its stance, fully rounded form, and not inconsiderable size, is in fact quite statuesque. Carved during the artist's Whale Cove years in the mid 1960s, Animal has an undeniable sculptural presence; in its own delightful way it is as imposing as some of Miki's masterpieces of the period (see references).
1. Norman Zepp, Pure Vision (1986), p. 37.
References: For similarly styled animal figures by Miki see Bernadette Driscoll, Eskimo Point/Arviat (WAG, 1982), cat. 47; Ingo Hessel, Inuit Art: An Introduction (Douglas & McIntyre, 1998), fig. 106; Norman Zepp, Pure Vision: The Keewatin Spirit (Regina: Norman Mackenzie Art Gallery, 1986) cat. 4; Maria von Finckenstein ed., Celebrating Inuit Art 1948-1970 (Gatineau: Canadian Museum of Civilization, 1999), p. 152. See also Walker's Auctions, May 2017, Lot 27; Nov. 2016, Lot 18; Nov. 2011, Lot 44.