This is a subtle and potent work.

A deceptively simple image of a small group apparently unloading goods from three ships beached at low tide in fact evokes a succession of historical epochs. The vessel on the right is the Lady Franklin – alluding to mythic and disastrous expedition of the 1840s, here exemplifying the period of early contacts between Inuit and Europeans. The second is RMS Nascopie, a supply ship that made many voyages and was associated with the Hudsons Bay Company, the Canadian Mounted Police, until it too was wrecked in 1947. The third is the Nunavut, in fact not the name of a ship but of the autonomous indigenous territory that was established in 1999. The three thus represent the precolonial, colonial, and postcolonial epochs, yet they are enigmatically similar, and appear to bear the same relationship to those locals who here get on with their business. This acquisition was presented by the Art Fund and the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation.


Galerie d'Art Vincent

Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Downing Street, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, CB2 3DZ
01223 333516

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