The spelling of Inuktitut words are transcribed from original source material in the text. Some orthographical inconsistencies may be unavoidable.



aglu: a hole in the sea ice where seals come up for air.


akootok: fat mixed with meat.


amulet: a small object, usually from an animal, worn either for spiritual protection or to promote good fortune.


angatkut (also spelled: angatkuq; angakuq): a shaman - a person who mediates between the human and spirit worlds to heal the sick, ensure good weather and abundant hunting. Shamans were aided by helping spirits, usually those of animals. Through a process of transformation the shaman would assume the forms of these spirits.


ataupluta: autumn trip to the sea ice.


ayagak: ball and pin game.


Copper Inuit: an anthropological designation referring to a group of Inuit, including the residents of Holman, who traditionally manufactured tools and weapons from the abundant natural copper found in the region in which they lived.


Cubism: an early 20th century art movement using a new spatial organization in which aspects of an object were depicted combining several simultaneous points of view.


curate: (verb) work done by a curator at a gallery or museum. A curator is a professional who has obtained a degree in fine arts and art history from a university or art school. Using a theoretical framework, the curator organizes exhibitions, proposes works for acquisition and writes books and articles in the area of their expertise.


elder: one who is old or older, usually thought of as a person who has acquired wisdom and earned respect.


Eskimo (Esquimaux): historically used to refer to indigenous people of Arctic North America. The term derives from the Algonquin word for "eaters of raw meat."


floe-edge: point at which ice ends and open sea water begins.


igloo (iglu): domed winter house made of snow blocks.


Inuit: "the people" in Inuktitut.


inuk: singular for Inuit, or "person."


inukshuit: plural of inukshuk.


inukshuk: means "like a person." An arrangement of stones, often resembling the shape of a human. The inukshuk is used as a navigational aid, as a marker for hunting grounds and caches of food or supplies, in hunting to lure geese and corral caribou, and as a way to mark sacred ground. These stone cairns embody strong spiritual and ancestral connections and have been erected by Inuit on the Arctic tundra for many generations.


Inuktitut: language of the Canadian Inuit. In Holman, a dialect of Inuktitut is spoken, called Inuinnaqtun. In the Western Arctic the language is written in the Roman orthography used for the English alphabet, unlike the Central and Eastern Arctic where syllabics are used.


kakivak: three-pronged fish spear.


kamik: boot sewn from seal skin or caribou hide.


kayak: a one-person watercraft covered in skins with a small central opening for the user.


komatik: dog sled.


kudlik: stone lamp fuelled by seal oil used for heating and light.


mass media: communication technology such as radio, television, internet, etc. that can reach mass populations.


myth: a common story or legend. Although the word "myth" means untrue to some people, to others the word embodies a different kind of "truth" which expresses their deepest and truest values, fears, hopes, and beliefs.


new media: usually refers to the use of the most recent digital technologies in the fine arts such as multimedia art Web sites.


permafrost: permanently frozen ground.


qullitaq: outer parka.


realism: used here to mean appearing realistic, representing how things appear to the eye, as opposed to non-representational or abstract art.


shaman: see angatkut.


shamanism: the traditional Inuit belief system centred on the power and abilities of shamans who acted as intermediaries between the human and spirit worlds.


stencil print: the principle of cutting shapes in a piece of card [or other material] and brushing colour through the openings onto a sheet of paper beneath. See references for printmaking Web sites and books.


styrofoam or linocut print: styrofoam or linoleum is used as a block out of which an image is carved with a chisel. The surface is then inked and paper is pressed onto the inked surface. See references for printmaking Web sites and books.


tundra: treeless rolling plain.


ulu: a crescent-shaped knife, small and very sharp, used primarily by Inuit women in the preparation of food and skins.


Ulukhaktok: the highest bluff overlooking the community of Holman; also the community itself which means "the place where ulu parts are found." Artist Mary K. Okheena described this as meaning the place where natural copper could be found to make tools such as the crescent-shaped ulu or woman’s knife.


weir: stone enclosure erected in a shallow waterway, used for trapping and spearing fish.


"Western:" (quotes intentional) western assumes a central position to which everything else relates. For example, the "Far East" is far east to whom?



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