A gift of small piece of Totara wood to create a piece for this show using Moko (tattoo) designs within the Northwest Coast formline design.
I was not just welcomed, but was made to feel at home in Aotearoa during my visit in 2002 to accept an invitation from Toi Maori to attend the Wellington Festival of the Arts. It was very much like visiting my own people. I feel a connection to the Maori that begins with the rich culture and history; our histories are both carved in wood in many of the same ways. What stood out and inspired me was seeing the highly developed wood sculpture during a visit to the Pataka Museum in Wellington. It makes you appreciate more of what both cultures achieved in our arts. With such a rich past, Maori artists still continue to create meaningful art and in many new forms.
Stan is from the village of Kitselas near Terrace, British Columbia. He enrolled in the Gitanmaax School of Northwest Coast Indian Art in 1979 and followed that with an extensive apprenticeship with his uncle Dempsey Bob, who was also an early influence in his decision to become an artist. By 1987 Stan had a strong grounding in art and culture, having contributed to numerous commissions, educational projects and ceremonies under the guidance of Dempsey Bob, and he began to concentrate on his own pieces. He has received numerous commissions, often in collaboration with his cousin Ken McNeil, including a totem pole for the University of British Columbia First Nations House of Learning and a totem pole that represented Canada at Expo 92 in Seville, Spain (later raised at the Kitselas Cultural Centre). He has been included in many exhibitions defining the future directions of woodcarving.
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