Syllabic Translator

i u a pi pu pa ti tu ta ki ku ka gi gu ga mi mu ma ni nu na si su sa li lu la ji ju ja vi vu va ri ru ra qi qu qa ngi ngu nga lhi lhu lha

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Pierre Karlik



stone, carved in relief; signed and disc number inscribed to the reverse; the walnut stand including a presentation plaque to the Honourable John N. Turner, Overall very good condition.

Please contact the specialist for further condition information.

16 x 12.25 x 1 in — 40.6 x 31.1 x 2.5 cm

Presented to the Hon. John N. Turner, April 1969;
By descent to Geills M. Turner, Toronto, ON

Plaque inscribed as:
"Presented to the Hon. JOHN N. TURNER, P.C., O.C., Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of Canada and the Northwest Territories, by the Hon. Mr. Justice William G. Morrow, Judge of the Territorial Court of the Northwest Territories, on the occasion of his being admitted to practice within the Arctic Circle, Pond Inlet, N.W.T., April 11th, 1969."

"My husband was honoured to receive it and treasured it all his life. It was always present in his office wherever he was. To travel with Judge Morrow across the high arctic, stopping in small northern communities to witness court being held in a school, was a very moving experience, seeing justice come to the community. This special carving served as a reminder of an amazing northern experience, happily one of many which we experienced."
Geills M. Turner.

Pierre Karlik was commissioned to carve this coat of arms, which was presented to John Turner, who had just been appointed as the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of Canada and the Northwest Territories, on April 11, 1969, on the occasion of his being admitted to practice within the Arctic Circle. The coat of arms, as noted on the plaque, was presented to Turner by William George Morrow, one of the first Canadians to champion the legal and cultural cause of the North’s indigenous peoples. Morrow took on the quest for greater justice long before this had become part of our national conscience. [1]

Karlik was well known for both his masterful carving and his ability to capture great detail, which perhaps influenced his being chosen for the commission. Art historian Emily E. Auger notes that Karlik is “one of the few Inuit artists interested in putting his feelings into his work; he deliberately tries to make carvings that will encourage people to understand each other better and to communicate more. He becomes involved in carving through his desire to communicate a specific message." [2]

(1) William G. Morrow, Northern Justice: The Memoirs Of Mr. Justice William G. Morrow, ed. Will Morrow. (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1995.) Accessed online April 28, 2022.

(2) Emily E. Auger, The Way of Inuit Art, Aesthetics and History in and Beyond the Arctic, (North Carolina: McFarland & Company Inc., 2005), 167.

Estimate: $2,000—3,000

Auction Results

Auction Date Auction House Lot # Low Est High Est Sold Price
2022-06-09 Waddington's 59 2,000 3,000 3,300.00

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