For someone who professes to know
nothing about art,Jones has amassed an
iUlpressive collection, including at least one
print that's also owned by the National
Gallery of Canada.
Prints and sculptures from Jones' collec-
tion went on display at the Ackland Art
Museum in 1999 as part of a regional cele-
bration of Nunavut's establishment that
year. Jones also loaned items to the Duke
University Museum of Art and the N.C.
Crafts Center, which hosted an exhibition
of Qappik's prints.
Barbara Matilsky, a curator at the Ack-
land, said the how was one of the most
popular the museum has had.
Jones' own fascination with the Far
North stems from his admiration for Inuit
hardiness and self-sufficiency, qualities he
understood because he grew up on a
North Carolina tenant farm during the
Depression. But he didn't recognize those
qualities right away. On his first trip to the
Arctic, in Alaska in 1971, he wondered
why, with regular air service running south
from Fairbanks, the Inuit he met chose to
stay in such a cold, isolated enviromnent.
"It was a silly question," he says now.
"They had no desire to go anywhere else.
They had no need to go anywhere else.
Now this is before the days of indoor
plumbing, running water, that sort of thing.
I was born in Kill Quick, up in Caswell
Counry,just this side of the Virginia border.
In Kill Q uick, I grew up ill poverty with-
out any of those amenities, and it didn't
bother me. Whereas the govermnent offi-
cials and scientists and so forth flying up
there, they didn't like it at all- this back-
wardness, this primitiveness."
He became increasingly intrigued by -
and knowledgeable about - the Inuit tra-
dition of reliance on the natural world for
everything they ate, wore and built. "They
look at something and inUl1ediately the
question is, what's it for?" he said. "And if
they can't figure out a use for it, then they
have no interest in it. The idea ofnot wast-
ing something, of making some use out of
it - that's how I got interested in the cul-
ture and gradually the art, because I began
to see that everything that they did was a
reflection of their culture."
Collecting Inuit art is a very different
undertaking fi'om building the North Car-
olina Collection, which Jones developed
into the most comprehensive archive of its
kind in the country. (That work, and his
previous contributions as state archivist and
as director of the state's Deparbl1ent of
Archives and History, earned him the
North Carolina Award for Public Service
in 2002.) But he has approached his per-
sonal avocation with an archivist's meticu-
lous care. Each item has a numbered label
that corresponds to the typed records about
the artist, place and date of purchase that
he keeps in vinyl binders. He has rosters of
each of his Arctic trips and a photo albul11
for each visit to Pangnirtung.
No one knows the beach like we do ...
Ma~ cheatham King Alma WiliisAlO<ander
('OJ) (' 78)
Specializing in Coastal
Real Estate Sales
Atlantic Beach Morehead City
Pine Knoll Shores BeauFort
Atlantic Beach, N.C.
C ol('s Corner
Casual Fine Southern Dining
Serving Dinner &
"Sacred ground for Southern foodies"
Dining room open lues-Sun at 5: 30 pm
- The Ne w York Times
"Country Cookin' Gone Cool, .. Then: bait shop and
juke joint. Now: crazed folk-art animals on the roof,
post-graduates in the kitchen, Waiters deconstruct
the War Between the States as they serve your
jalapeno-cheese hush puppies and oyster·and·
filet mignon scalawags, Get in line for Crook's
signature dish: Shrimp and Grits with bacon,
scallions, and mushrooms." - Travel & Leisure
Sun Brunch 10: 30 am to 2:00 pm
610 West Franklin St, Chapel Hill, NC
CAR.OL I NA ALUMNI R.EvIEW