The wonderful thing about art making, is that the design you start out with isn’t always going to be what ends up as the final piece. This was the case with this piece. At first I had planned to have the two forms — the teapot body and the handle — represent buildings in cities. When buildings are designed, they have to be able to move from side to side to accommodate the winds. When I first heard this many years ago, I was so surprised to learn that buildings actually move in this manner. Later, when I first went to Toronto (not long after the CN Tower was built), I was very much taken with the opportunity to look up… way up… to the top of all those skyscrapers, and was simply amazed at their sheer size.
So with this piece, I ended up going with that idea of the flow of a building in a swaying motion for the teapot — and for the handle, I reversed the perspective to the way you would see the skyscrapers from the ground up. (Which actually works better with the teapot design).
I titled the piece “green tea” because I have a routine of having three cups of green tea everyday before I start to work. This gives me the chance to make sure I have my day laid out, knowing what I have to complete to be satisfied with the day’s work… and for the fact that I used serpentine stone for the handle (and this is also the first time that I have used stone instead of wood or bone in one of my teapots).
Massie’s work is a reflection of his mixed Inuit, Métis and Scottish heritage. In it, he investigates both traditional and contemporary themes. He has achieved renown for his innovative teapots that combine themes and symbols from his native Inuit culture with European traditions. Massie has been twice short-listed for the coveted Prix Saidye Bronfman and has an extensive international reputation. His work has been shown in North America and Europe, including the National Gallery of Canada. He was elected a member of Royal Canadian Academy of Arts in 2011.
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