Spirit Wrestler Gallery (Vancouver, Canada)

Voices of the Animals - Niho-kuri


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In some cultures animals are revered as guardians, clan crests, and symbols of status. In Māori the kuri or dog was a prized possession. It was an animal that was important for not only it’s fur but also the process of preparing the ngārahu, the pigment used for moko (tattooing). The kuri never barked but made a sound like au,au,au. In Whakairo carving, a series of notches was based on the kuri called Niho-kuri (tooth of the dog) once again highlighting the importance of the kuri.
—Lewis Gardiner

For my part, I gave this form a wolf design. It can be interpreted as a dog which were thought of fondly. They were acute to sounds in nature and therefore brought value as a guardian and companion. The Wolf was the original moiety of the Tlingit, opposite the Raven. The ancient Tlingit observed the high social order of wolves and adopted the wolf as a symbol of the tribe.
—Preston Singletary

Preston Singletary / Lewis Gardiner

Preston Singletary / Lewis Gardiner

Collaboration for the Fire & Water: Pacific Visions in Glass and Jade exhibition, 2007.

Collaborations between great artists are historically rare, despite frequent attempts and enthusiastic interest to bring technical skills and artistic chemistry together. In the end, it often seems that personal careers, distance, and other issues make these projects too difficult to realize. What makes this particular collaboration even more remarkable is that the two artists are geographically in different hemispheres — almost at polar opposites of the world.