The Spirit Wrestler Gallery is very pleased to bring this remarkable fusion exhibition of small masterworks by three cultures that we proudly represent: Maori of Aotearoa (New Zealand), First Nations of the Northwest Coast and Inuit of northern Canada. The conversation between these works from three corners of the world will tell stories that offer both comparison and contrast making the gallery a truly unique place to visit.
Over the last few years, we have mounted a number of monumental exhibitions of large-scale works of art—this time we wanted to present an exhibition on a smaller scale that would surprise and delight our audience. Greatness can be small in appearance, yet still be large in presence and power. The criterion for this exhibition was to select unique works that expressed the artists’ attention to detail. The challenges were to find the curious—and to have fun!
The Maori artists have excelled, producing an extraordinary selection of innovative works in a great variety of media, including ceramics, harakeke flax and pounamu jade. For many artists who are much in demand now for their larger works, it was a rare opportunity for them to produce art on a smaller scale.
From the artists of the Northwest Coast came wonderful, intricate utilitarian and regalia pieces in varied native woods from the Pacific coastline. Amongst the many inspired works featured here are exquisitely inlaid argillites, detailed narrative designs in silver, and delicately chiseled and painted carvings in wood.
The Inuit were a nomadic culture that had to be self-sufficient, producing all the implements and tools necessary to their survival. They also carved small protector amulet forms—as well as small carvings that reflected their sense of the world around them. The tradition continues here in a more contemporary flavour with smaller, often candid and humorous works in indigenous materials from the Arctic.
This collection was a pleasure to plan and to curate—and as the works began to arrive, it was so exciting to open those small boxes to reveal the treasures inside! We invite you to join us here at the gallery to view the exhibition—a wonderful blend of creations to be appreciated in the hand, to crack a smile, or to simply amaze.
March 14 - April 4, 2015
'Keewatin Women in Stone' celebrates the lives of two very different Nunavut artists from the Keewatin region north-west of the Hudsons Bay. Camille Iquilq (1963-2005) and Lucy Tasseor Tutsweetok (1934-2012) are representative of two generations and very different upbringings. Lucy was born on the land and experienced the nomadic and traditional way of life before settling in Arviat, whereas Camille was born and raised within the relative comfort of the community of Baker Lake. The collection is a selection of at least 30 stone sculptures from each artist, with pieces ranging from the early 1990s forward. The exhibition contrasts their individual styles yet highlights the same shared values with relationships and the strong bonds within the family.
Spirit Wrestler Gallery
47 Water Street
Canada V6B 1A1
Toll Free: 1-888-669-8813
3 blocks from Waterfront Station
Between Abbott St. and Carrall St.
Monday to Saturday, open 10-6
Sunday and Holidays, open 12-5
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