Inuksuk Journey: An Artist at the Top of the World

Inuksuk Journey: An Artist at the Top of the World

by Mary Wallace
     
 

Inuksuk Journey is a visually stunning chronicle of Mary Wallace’s summer trip to the Arctic, inspired by her long-held fascination with the ancient Inuit symbol of the inuksuk, or stone marker. Wallace's trek took her through the land in a way few people will ever experience, and her "you-are-there" journal, illustrated with photographs, sketches,

Overview


Inuksuk Journey is a visually stunning chronicle of Mary Wallace’s summer trip to the Arctic, inspired by her long-held fascination with the ancient Inuit symbol of the inuksuk, or stone marker. Wallace's trek took her through the land in a way few people will ever experience, and her "you-are-there" journal, illustrated with photographs, sketches, and artifacts, includes dramatic encounters with Arctic wildlife, tales of hunting, fishing, and living off the land, and accounts of visiting undisturbed relics of Inuit life dating back thousands of years. Thirteen paintings — each inspired by a different day of the artist's journey — richly depict the region's land, sea, sky, wildlife, and people. The knowledge Wallace gains from her Inuit guides allows deep insight into the various forms of the inuksuk and its many purposes. An engaging, gorgeous mix of travel journal and art book, Inuksuk Journey offers a memorable portrait in words and pictures of one of the world's last remaining true wildernesses.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Renee Biermann
It is difficult to classify this book as one format or another. While it has the traditional style of a picture book, its readership is much higher than the standard early-elementary levels. Mary Wallace is a celebrated Canadian children's author and illustrator. In this book, she shares her day-to-day diary from a camping trip she took with her sister to Nunavut, Canada. Wallace has written multiple books about Inuit art and culture. Perhaps it is because she is so familiar with her topic that she fails to fully explain the subject of her book—stone messengers created by ancient Inuit called inuksuk. There are minor definitions and multiple photos and paintings, but I never did fully understand the differences between different types of inuksuk (directional, welcoming, warning, etc.). I wanted to know more, or perhaps have a few pages of diagrams. Since I know Wallace has written another title about how to make my own inuksuk, the answers to my questions might be found there. Another problem with the book is that young readers may lose interest. It is essentially a collection of journal entries, paintings and photographs from an adult vacation. While the subject matter is fascinating and the paintings are breathtaking, I do wonder if it will have a strong enough appeal with its intended audience. As an adult, I adore the book, but I'm not so sure I could get through the whole thing with a child. Wallace's artistic talents are stunning, and her words are rich with figurative language. I truly enjoyed the book; I'm just concerned that too many genres may have been used in one place. Reviewer: Renee Biermann
School Library Journal

Gr 5 Up

Nunavut, an Arctic territory in northern Canada, is a cold, open space where inuksuk, piles of stone in the shape of a person used to "mark a family home, welcome guests, guide travelers, and ensure safe passage," are commonly found. Wallace has developed a passion for these ancient messengers, and here she presents a journal of her weeklong trek to Inuksugassait, a place where countless numbers of the stone markers stand. The author expresses awe and respect as she connects with the land. What appeared to be a barren white expanse on day one is soon revealed to be a sacred space that has provided for the people there for thousands of years. Wallace includes personal photos, sketches, and comments that give readers an intimate portrait of life in this place. Over a dozen vibrant oil paintings depicting scenes from her journey are scattered throughout. She relates the necessity of hunting, and tells how a seal can provide clothing, food, and oil for an entire family. Polar bears, caribou, and whales are among the wildlife spotted on the journey. Readers will be fascinated by this firsthand account of true adventure.-Lisa Glasscock, Columbine Public Library, Littleton, CO

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781897349267
Publisher:
Owlkids Books
Publication date:
10/01/2008
Pages:
64
Product dimensions:
9.20(w) x 11.20(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
9 - 13 Years

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