Meelia Kelly

 

Inuit

Meelia Kelly was a Kinngait-based graphic artist known for use of exaggerated shapes and colourful works. Kelly lived the first several years of her life between nomadic winter and summer camps before her family settled in Kinngait. Kelly’s older sister, Sheojuk Etidlooie, was also a graphic artist and encouraged Kelly to begin making art. In the mid-1990s, Kelly began to work out of the Kinngait Studio run by the local co-operative, and she quickly developed her own personal style. In Hoot (2006) an owl, or what looks to be the abstracted body of an owl, stands out for it's bright fuchsia body and little red feet poking out at the bottom. The body is filled to the brim with smaller white owls, looking straight ahead with wide eyes, and they look as if they are being taken for a ride.

Kelly’s rendering of the details of her community and arctic wildlife garnered her attention and her work was featured in the Cape Dorset Annual Print Collection from 2001-2006. In addition, her piece Pursued (2003) was featured on the cover of the spring 2004 issue of the Inuit Art Quarterly. She passed away in 2006, but continues to inspire a new generation of artists, notably her grandson Moe Kelly.