The First Passionate Collector: The Ian Lindsay Collection of Inuit Art


The Ian Lindsay Collection is one of the finest Inuit art collections ever assembled. For the early years, 1949-53, it is unsurpassed.  Comprised of over 400 sculptures, it was acquired by The Winnipeg Art Gallery in two parts in 1985 and 1989. This publication is the catalogue of an exhibition held at The Winnipeg Art Gallery June 30 – November 12, 1990.


The exhibition presented a selection of 152 works from the collection, representing Ian Lindsay’s various special areas of interest. A graphic artist himself, Mr. Lindsay chose each piece in his collection with great care and discrimination, preferring artworks with originality, humour and strong form.


Mr. Lindsay acquired his first pieces of Inuit art at an exhibition at the Canadian Handicrafts Guild, Montreal, in November 1949. Convinced that the unique little carvings were important works of Canadian art, Ian Lindsay bought more than 5

Fifty pieces at the historic first exhibition. For the next forty years he continued to collect Inuit art, following his own instincts.


Writer and artist James Houston once called Ian Lindsay “the first passionate collector” of Inuit art. Although that passion has been taken up by many, no other collection private or public has the exceptional character of this one. For The Winnipeg Art Gallery, housing such a gift and making it available for all is a privilege.

Editor: Darlene Coward Wight

Essays: Sheila Butler, Frederica Woodrow Knight, Ian Lindsay, Darlene Coward Wight

Copyright: The Winnipeg Art Gallery and the authors, 1990

ISBN: 0-88915-159-8

Softcover, 175 pages

In stock

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Weight 1.5000 kg
Dimensions 3.2258 × 53.2384 × 69.342 cm