Celebrating Nunavut Day 2024: Joanie Ragee

As an emerging talent rising from a place rich in Inuit narrative, Joanie Ragee has a family lineage steeped in artistic excellent.

In 1986, Joanie was born into the renowned artistic hub of Kinnegait. His exploration into the world of sculpture began at the tender age of 12. His early forays into carving were guided by his father, Nowdlak Noah from Iqaluit, and influenced by his brother Siutiapiq Ragee and uncles Toonoo and Napachie Sharky, who are both acclaimed artists in their own right.

Initially, his carvings were Inuksuit (plural for Inukshuk), those iconic stone landmarks that hold deep cultural significance in Inuit tradition. However, it wasn’t long before his artistic curiosity and inherent talent led him to delve into serpentine stone, a medium that has become his constant canvas for depicting the majestic Polar Bear.

His Bears are not mere representations; they are infused with a lively sense of movement and a touch of humor, capturing the spirit of these magnificent creatures.

Ragee’s ability to breathe life into stone sets him apart as a sculptor of remarkable promise. His popular Polar Bears, whether poised in playful dance or captured mid-stalk, exude a vitality that speaks to his deep connection with his subjects.

This dynamic quality is reminiscent of the natural world’s unpredictability and beauty, a testament to his keen observation and artistic intuition.

Growing up surrounded by the stunning landscapes of Nunavut, from the harsh coastlines to the vast, icy expanses, Joanie’s art is deeply reflective of his environment. Each piece he creates tells the story of his land, a visual odyssey into the heart of the Arctic.

Whether you are an art enthusiast, a collector, or someone seeking to learn more about Indigenous culture, by supporting artists like Joanie, you help preserve and promote the vibrant culture and history of the Inuit people.

As we celebrate Nunavut Day, we invite you to revel in the world of Joanie Ragee.