Graphic artist, storyteller and hunter born in Qirnituarjuq (Nunavik) in 1928.
Tivi Etok, also referred to as Tivi Etook, was born in 1928 in Qirnituarjuq, a camp near Kangiqsualujjuaq on the East coast of Ungava Bay in Nunavik. He grew up in Kuugurjuaq with his parents Aatami and Sarah, his brother Joe Willie, his two uncles Lucassie and Pita and their children. In his childhood, he received a Catholic education to which he remained faithful. He also spent time drawing animals, hunting scenes and imaginary village life.
His career as a graphic artist began in 1972, at a Puvirnituq workshop where he learned stone carving techniques. His carving was soon well liked by the workshop’s clients and by 1976, his art was in galleries in Montréal (Québec) and Waterloo (Ontario). Tivi Etok’s work draws its inspiration from traditional Inuit tales and legends (the spirit world and supernatural beings), as well as his own childhood memories and the stories of his elders. His ambition is to transmit Inuit culture to the next generation. Tivi Etok’s art has formed the subject of two bilingual books: Whispering in My Ears and Mingling With My Dreams = Légendes susurrées à mes oreilles s’entremêlant à mes rêves (1975) and In the Days Long Past = Autrefois (1976), published by the Fédération des coopératives du Nouveau-Québec. His work has been included in exhibitions across North America and is part of the permanent collection of the Royal Ontario Museum (Toronto), the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York) and the Museum of National History (Gatineau). In 1978, The Fédération des coopératives du Nouveau-Québec published Inuialguatavinigi = Dessins esquimaux 1978 = Eskimo drawings 1978, a collection of drawings and engravings.
To provide a legacy to Inuit youth and to Québec, Tivi Etok related his life to author and filmmaker Jobie Weetaluktuk, and the resulting Le Monde de Tivi Etok. La vie et l’art d’un aîné inuit. The World of Tivi Etok. The Life and Art of an Inuit Elder. ᑏᕕ ᐃᑦᑑᑉ ᐃᓅᓯᖓ ᓴᓇᓐᖑᐊᕈᓯᖓᓗ ᐅᓂᒃᑲᐅᓯᖏᓪᓗ, is a trilingual (Inuktitut, French, English) biography and art retrospective published in 2008 and reissued in 2011. Similarly, he collaborated with ethnobotanist Alain Cuerrier and other Inuit elders, to publish two books : Le savoir botanique des Inuits de Kangiqsualujjuaq, Nunavik = The botanical knowledge of the Inuit of Kangiqsualujjuaq, Nunavik = ᐱᕈᕐᑐᓂᒃ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᐅᓯᖏᑦ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᑲᖏᕐᓱᔪᐊᕐᒥᐅᑦ, ᓄᓇᕕᒻᒥ (2011), and Le savoir zoologique des Inuits de Kangiqsujuaq, Nunavik = The Zoological Knowledge of the Inuit of Kangiqsualujjuaq, Nunavik = ᐆᒪᔪᕐᓂᒃ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᐅᓯᖏᑦ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᑲᖏᕐᓱᐊᓗᑦᔪᐊᒥᐅᑦ, ᓄᓇᕕᒻᒥ (2012).
Tivi Etok and his late wife, Susie Baron, have four children. He is a well-respected elder, in and outside of his Nunavik community.