Avaalaaqiaq Tiktaalaaq was born on the North Shore of Tebesjuak Lake near Baker Lake (NT). She was raised on the land by her grandparents in the traditional Inuit style. She began her art career in 1969-1970 with small soapstone carvings, often of animals with human heads. She received an honorary doctorate of laws in recognition of her contribution to the development of Inuit art and her leadership role in the Nunavut community of Baker Lake from the University of Guelph in 1999. Her work is part of the collections at the National Gallery of Canada (Ontario, ON), the Winnipeg Art Gallery (MB), the Baltimore Museum of Art (Maryland, USA), the Art Gallery of Guelph (ON), and the College of William & Mary (Virginia, USA).