Mary Pudlat was born in 1926 in Arctic Quebec near the present-day community of Povungnituk. She migrated to the Cape Dorset area in the early 1940’s, settling in the Cape Dorset area. Mary married Samuelie Pudlat, a widower with two small children. His brothers were Pudlo and Osoochiak, both well-known graphic artists. They lived in numerous small camps in the South Baffin area until Samuelie began full-time, wage employment in 1960 with the newly formed West Baffin Eskimo Co-operative. At that time, Mary started to draw. Her first work was published in 1966 and she has contributed work to the annual graphics collection ever since. She was also commissioned by the Government of the Northwest Territories to create a large mural to hang in the new Iqaluit Visitor’s Centre which opened in 1991.
Samuelie and Mary both were very supportive of the Co-operative’s development in Cape Dorset; Sam was one of its earliest employees, a position he held until his retirement shortly before his death in 1988. The community’s new junior school, completed in 1990, is named after him. Mary’s adopted children are now mature adults (Pitaloosie Saila is Samuelie’s daughter from his first marriage).
Mary is represented for the last time in this collection by three images in three different media; stonecut, lithography and etching/aquatint. All of these editions were underway at the time of Mary’s death. Mary was able to sign the lithograph entitled, “Keeper of the Kelp” (2001-17); “Avataq (2001-16) and Tariurmiinngaaqtut” (2001-18) have been signed posthumously by her daughter-in-law, Sana.
Amon Carter Museum of Western Art, Fort Worth, Texas, U.S.A.
Art Gallery of York University, Downsview, Ontario
Canadian Museum of Civilization, Hull, Quebec
Confederation Centre of the Arts, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
Inuit Cultural Institute, Rankin Inlet, Northwest Territories
London Regional Art Gallery, London, Ontario
Macdonald Stewart Art Centre, Guelph, Ontario
McMaster University Art Gallery, Hamilton, Ontario
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City, N.Y., U.S.A.
Museum of Anthropology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia
National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario
Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Ontario
Simon Fraser Gallery, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, British Columbia
University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta
University of Lethbridge, Lethbridge, Alberta
University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, New Brunswick
Winnipeg Art Gallery, Winnipeg, Manitoba
From: *West Baffin Eskimo Co-operative”/ DFA