Marcel Russ was born in Queen Charlotte City on Haida Gwaii (the Queen Charlotte Islands) in 1973. Marcel is from the Raven Clan from Masset and his chief is Ilts’uwoos of the Raven Clan. The Russes are well-known argillite carvers of the Haida Nation and his ancestors on his grandmother’s side were also renowned carvers. Marcel was influenced by his father, noted argillite carver, Ron Russ, his uncle, Chris Russ.
Marcel started carving argillite under the direction of his father when he was eight and began carving wood when he was twelve. Twenty years later, he also works in wood, precious metals, ivory, and jade. He also makes paintings.
Early on he learned tool-making from Bill Reid — but has worked with a wide number of contemporary artistsand credits Jim Hart, Henry Green, Fred Davis, Jay Simeon, Ron Telek, and his uncle, the late Ed Russ, as being influential to his work.
His argillite and wood carvings have been collected internationally. In the spring of 1999 he exhibited with his father at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. He has carved a 22 foot pole for the Museum of Northern BC, Prince Rupert and assisted Jim Hart with the carving of 40 foot pole for the village of Tanu.
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