CHAMPCAR/CART: Canadian Triple Crown trophies designer named

CHAMP CAR WORLD SERIES COMMISSIONS RENOWNED INUIT ARTIST TO CREATE ORIGINAL CANADIAN TRIPLE CROWN TROPHIES Inuksuk carvings to be awarded for inaugural Champ Car team competition represent achievement, strength and team...

CHAMP CAR WORLD SERIES COMMISSIONS RENOWNED INUIT ARTIST TO CREATE ORIGINAL CANADIAN TRIPLE CROWN TROPHIES

Inuksuk carvings to be awarded for inaugural Champ Car team competition represent achievement, strength and team building.

TORONTO, Ontario, Canada (July 4, 2007) - The Champ Car World Series has commissioned one of the world's premiere Inuit artists, Ohito Ashoona, to create the six trophies that will be presented to the top-three teams in the Champ Car Canadian Triple Crown.

Ashoona, who displays his work with the Toronto-based Eskimo Art Gallery on Queen's Quay, comes from a family of world renowned artists. The Cape Dorset, Nunavut native is the recipient of the 2002 National Aboriginal Achievement Award and his work can be seen at the Art Gallery of Ontario and the Canada Council Art Bank. His creations recently were on exhibit in Paris and Annecy, France.

"We're honored that Mr. Ashoona, who tells us that he's a big Champ Car race fan, agreed to produce these original pieces of art for our inaugural Canadian Triple Crown," said Champ Car World Series President Steve Johnson. "He's completing the carvings this week in Toronto, and while we don't want to rush him, we hope to have them available for fans and media to view them at the Steelback Grand Prix of Toronto this weekend."

Ashoona's work is best summarized as the interweaving of two realisms, the representation of the mystic arctic environment and the exuberant Inuit culture. With only the use of primitive tools such as an axe, a hand saw and files, the sculptor can spend many hours chipping away on a piece of rock turning it into a unique creation.

The trophies that Ashoona is creating for the Canadian Triple Crown are known as Inuksuk. An inuksuk is a man-made formation of stones arranged in the likeness of a human being. The stone sculptures were primarily used for navigation and to mark trails and were known as "silent messengers".

Today, the inuksuk represents leadership, achievement, direction and strength. To build the larger-than-life size sculptures, many Inuks had to work together and for that reason the inuksuk is symbolic of co-operation and team building.

The one-of-a-kind trophies will be awarded during a special podium ceremony following the Rexall Grand Prix of Edmonton on July 22, 2007.

For more information on Ohito Ashoona, visit www.eskimoart.com and click on Spotlight On.

-credit: ccws

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Series INDYCAR