Cape Dorset, Nunavut Territory, Canada
Malaija Pootoogook was born in Iqaluit in the cold winter month of
January, 1971. She is the adopted daughter of Paulassie Pootoogook
and Ishuhungitok Pootoogook, both now deceased. Malaija has
been surrounded by artists in her family. Her father, Paulassie was
highly regarded as a sculptor and her brother, Mosesee, is also a
talented stone carver. Her brother, Itee Pootoogook, has received
critical and popular acclaim for his contemporary drawings.
Malaiya did her first drawing in 1994, inspired by the work of her
great-grandmother, the late Pitseolak Ashoona.
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