Born in Arviat in 1944, Joseph learned to hunt and fish from his father. He also was taught how to make superb sleds (komatiks) which he uses when out hunting, fishing and trapping during the winter.

In 1962 Joseph married Dorothy who also loves to hunt and was doing so for years before meeting Joseph. The Akatsiak family has grown to include 13 children.

Dorothy sews traditional caribou parkas that Joseph wears when out fishing during the winter months. Joseph has won the Arviat Fishing Derby for the past 5 years. I witnessed a photograph of him holding the winning catch for 2005, a 45 pound lake trout. Joseph received $6000 for that enormous fish.

Joseph also enjoys trapping and did so alone for many years. Now, however, he must take medication so Dorothy accompanies him. “The nurse told me not to go out on the land anymore because it was too dangerous. I go anyway because I am not afraid to die on the land. If I die, I want to die on the land.”

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Joseph Akatsiak
Inuit, Arviat
Image size: 11 x 13 inches
Edition size: 375