skip to primary navigation skip to content


You are not currently logged in

Museum catalogue: Arctic Material Culture Collection


Umiak, model; 5 oars

Accession no.: N: 565a-f
Title: Umiak, model; 5 oars
Description: Umiak (a), model with five oars (b-f). Kitaamiut (West Greenlanders). Made by Martin Zeeb, Uummannaq, Kalaallit Nunaata Kitaa (West Greenland), 1928-1929 ?.
Artist: Zeeb, Martin
Classified name:
Current cultural affiliation Kilamiut
Former cultural affiliation West Greenlanders
Current place name Kalaallit Nunaata Kitaa > Uummannaq
Former place name West Greenland > Umanak
Gender female
Getty AAT Models
Field collection:
Person hutchison
Place Kalaallit Nunaata Kitaa (West Greenland) > Uummannaq
Date 1928
Number of items: 6
Full description:

a: Umiak (a), with flat bottom, is made of a wooden framework consisting of stem and stern posts caped with trapezoidal stem heads, 5 cross trees securing a bilge streak at each side and a keelson in the centre, 5 ribs securing 2 long boards along each side and 5 seats, and 2 circular gunwales on the top of the ribs which project beyond stem and stern. Pieces are lashed together with sinew and wooden rivets. Umiak cover is made of cream dehaired seal skin attached to stem heads and gunwales at each end with four (originally 5) ivory pegs. Skin is turned over the gunwales to the interior and secured with string around uppermost side board (see Birket-Smith 1924: Figure 180 for technique). Original tears in cover repaired with sinew stitching.

b - f: Oars (b-f) are each made from a single piece of wood. Blades are long and flat with central ridge and straight bevelled ends. Handles are circular in cross-section flaring slightly then constricting at proximal end.

  • a: Width: 195mm, height: 125mm, length: 716mm
  • b - f: Width: 25mm, length: 343mm