December 16, 1948
Kelly Qimirpik currently lives and works in Cape Dorset, Nunavut. He started to carve at the age of fourteen after learning with his brother, Allashua Atsiaq. In 1976, he participated in the Baffin Island Sculpture exhibition in Iqaluit. Like many Inuit carvers, Kelly is influenced by his surroundings, and many of his pieces depict polar bears, rabbits, and muskoxen. However, many of his pieces are also self-referential, and depict artists at work. In 1991, he was included in the Animals of the Arctic exhibition held at the Arctic Art Gallery in Richmond, Virginia. In 1993, he attended a sculpture workshop at The Carving Studio in West Rutland, Vermont, which was sponsored by the Inuit Art Foundation. In 2002, Kelly designed and constructed the large Inukshuk in Toronto’s Battery Park. The Inukshuk was selected as a symbol for the city’s World Youth Day, and it was blessed by Pope John Paul II when he visited the city.