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Taluq unveils its inukshuk

Sydney Selvon
Northern News Services

Spence Bay (Dec 19/05) - Imagination and creativity combine to produce cute little "packing dolls" at a crafts business in Taloyoak.

"I invented just last week a new product, our 15th of this kind, which I have called the Inukshuk packing doll," said Mona Igutsaq, general manager of Taluq Designs Ltd.

The inukshuk is a powerful symbol of the Northern peoples. They are traditionally stone statues put up in the ice-covered land with arms stretched out in the direction of shelter to help guide travellers. In the case of Taluq's inukshuk, they have a little twist.

"Those dolls are made for people to pack things in them," Igutsaq said. "The inukshuk doll is now part of our many products that are produced by people of our community."

Other products include slippers, embroidery works, carvings and other similar items that have attracted the attention of royalty.

"I have met a number of personalities like the Queen, to whom we presented one of our polar bears, former governor general Adrienne Clarkson and astronaut Chris Hatfield, when they visited our region," Igutsaq stated.

The business employs about 18 to 20 people from the community on a monthly basis. It was started in 1992 and Mona recalls visiting trips from house to house to collect products.

In 1995, the firm moved into its own offices.

"This business has a good reputation. It's good for the community and they also teach crafts to our children at school," said resident Johna Jayko. "I don't think they get enough money for what they do, but I like what they do."