Alootook Ipellie

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Alootook Ipellie (1951 – September 8, 2007)[1] was an Inuk graphic artist, political and satirical cartoonist, writer, photographer, and Inuktitut translator.[1]

Early life[edit]

Ipellie was born in the small hunting camp of Nuvuqquq[2] near Frobisher Bay, Northwest Territories, now known as Iqaluit, Nunavut on Baffin Island. His father, Joanassie, died in a hunting accident before Ipellie's first birthday, and his mother, Napatchie, moved with him to the hamlet of Frobisher Bay.[3] "He spent his childhood and early teenage years adjusting to the transition from the traditional nomadic Inuit way of life to life in government-sponsored Inuit settlements." [3][4]


Three illustrated poems by Alootook were published when he was 17 called 'Hot to Warm and Cool to Cold'. It begins ...

The mosquitos are at large today
As the wind stills, as the sun heats,
And we walk the rocks under,
Searching the hills for the meat
And hide of the useful caribou
that feeds and clothes my family,
Through four different seasons
When the winds change from
Hot to warm, and cool to cold.[5]

Awards and honors[edit]

In 2019, Ipellie was inducted into the Canadian Cartoonists Hall of Fame.[6]


Ipellie died of a heart attack in Ottawa, Ontario at age 56 [1] and is survived by his daughter, Taina Ipellie.


Year Title ISBN
1980 Paper stays put: a collection of Inuit writing edited by Robin Gedalof ; drawings by Alootook Ipellie. Edmonton : Hurtig Publishers 0888301812
1993 Alootook Ipellie. Arctic dreams and nightmares. Penticton, B.C. : Theytus Books. This publication is the first to exclusively feature Alootook Ipellie's stories and his pen and ink drawings.[7] 0919441475
2005 Blohm, Hans, Alootook Ipellie and Hartmut Lutz. The Diary of Abraham Ulrikab. Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press 978-0-7766-0602-6
2007 Lutz, Hartmut, Kathrin Grollmuß, Hans Blohm and Alootook Ipellie. Abraham Ulrikab im Zoo: Tagebuch eines Inuk 1880/81. Wesee (Germany): vdL:Verlag. German translation of The Diary of Abraham Ulrikab. 978-3-9263-0810-8
2007 Alootook Ipellie and David MacDonald. The Inuit thought of it : amazing Arctic innovations. Toronto : Annick Press. 9781554510887
2008 Alootook Ipellie and David MacDonald. Innovations inuites : il fallait y penser. Toronto : Éditions Scholastic. 9780545992299
2009 Alootook Ipellie and Anne-Marie Bourgeois. I shall wait and wait. [Oakville, Ont.] : Rubicon. In association with Scholastic Canada. 9781554487332


  1. ^ a b c "Alootook Ipellie's work lives on in Europe: A fitting legacy for Ipellie". Nunatsiaq News. Iqaluit, Nunavut. 13 December 2010. Retrieved August 16, 2012.
  2. ^ Aboriginal Affairs (2009). "Alootook Ipellie, Inuit storyteller".
  3. ^ a b Joyce MacPhee (29 October 2007). "Remembering Alootook Ipellie". The Epoch Times. Retrieved August 12, 2012.
  4. ^ Theytus Books (2007). "biography".
  5. ^ north May–June 1971 Volume XVIII, Number 3, pages 34 to 37 (north was a scarce publication by the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Ottawa.)
  6. ^ MacDonald, Heidi (23 April 2019). "Inuit cartoonist Alootook Ipellie and FIona Smythe are joining the Giants of the North Hall of Fame". The Beat.
  7. ^ Alootook Ipellie (1993). "Arctic dreams and nightmares". Theytus Books.

External links[edit]