Tony Anguhalluq’s exuberant images of the treeless northern terrain present a colourful vision of Arctic life. Because Anguhalluq combines a non-representational technique (his landscapes are often conceived as interlocking patterns of heavily outlined, solidly coloured silhouettes) with such compositional conventions as the use of horizon lines, many of his images feature an expressive tension between the flat picture and an illusive pictorial depth. Although the Arctic landscape is his primary subject, many of Anguhalluq’s drawings and prints also feature a human and/or animal presence, the narrative dimensions of which are revealed in the artist’s suggestive titles.
Anguhalluq was born in 1970 in Churchill, Manitoba, but has always lived in the Nunavut community of Baker Lake. A member of the Utkusiksalingmiut (“people of the soapstone pots”), he was adopted and raised by Luke Anguhadluq and Marion Tuu’luq, both prominent artists of the first generation. In the mid-1990s, Anguhalluq was invited to participate in a local printmaking workshop where he discovered his own talent for two-dimensional image making. His drawings and prints are found in many important private and public collections, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario and the Smithsonian.