Jonasie Faber

Inuit artist Jonasie Faber

Jonasie Faber was born in 1944 in Greenland. He lived there until the age of ten, upon which time his family moved to Denmark. By the time Jonasie was fifteen, he had grown very restless so decided to leave home and spent several years at sea aboard the square rigger Georg Stage. He eventually became a Deep-Sea Navigator at the Danish Naval Academy. He returned to Greenland as a Harbour Master, but emigrated to Canada two years later. He arrived in British Columbia in 1974.

When he first came to Canada, he established a business importing Greenlandic art. After repairing several sculptures that had been damaged in transit, he realized that he had a talent for carving and began to create his own artworks. As interest in his sculptures grew, Jonasie left his importing business in favour of becoming a full-time artist.

While obtaining affordable soapstone for his carvings initially proved to be quite difficult, Jonasie happened to come across a quarry while on a hunting trip. He effectively claimed this soapstone quarry as his own, resolving his sourcing issues for the remainder of his career. After studying the properties of this material, Jonasie learned how to incorporate the rhythm and flow of the stone into his carvings.

Jonasie’s talents have evolved over the course of his career, and he has proven to be one of Canada’s most distinguished and respected artists. His work can be found in the world-renowned auction houses of Waddington’s and Sotheby’s in New York, London, and Toronto, as well as in several private collections across Germany, Denmark, Japan, France, Italy, Canada, and the USA.