Faces of Greenland

Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum & Arctic Studies Center Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum & Arctic Studies Center



Arctic Museum main galleries
In the 1930s and 1940s, a group of artists in the small community of Kangaamiut on the west coast of Greenland were renowned for their carvings in ivory, tooth, and bone. Many are complete human figures, people engaged in everyday activities. Others are more mysterious, possibly mythical creatures. Still others feature human faces and animals carved in low relief.The group of carvings featured in this exhibit were purchased in Greenland in the 1940s by a visiting Danish dentist, Dr. Ankar Baregard. Shortly after his visit to Greenland Dr. Baregard traveled to the United States to visit his brother, Soren, and his family. He presented the collection to his American relatives, who displayed them in their home for over 40 years. In 2013 the museum acquired these remarkable pieces from the Baregard family for the permanent collection.

Pictured above: Faces carved on walrus teeth. Unidentified Inuit artist, Kangaamiut, ca. 1940. Ivory. Gift in memory of Ankar Baregard. Photo by Dean Abramson.