Spirit Wrestler Gallery (Vancouver, Canada)

“the man with the big right hand is seal hunting”


As always, I try to maximize the stone and get as much from it as possible. Originally I was going to have him standing in deep snow with his harpoon — but no! As the form emerged I was looking it over and ended up seeing him in a kayak. A friend of mine had just stopped over and had given me a couple of nice pieces of witch hazel (a local wood here) and right away I saw the opportunity to get a good size kayak. I went and did some research on kayaks — the photographs gave me both ideas and helped me to treat things authentically.

The piece got this title because, as I mentioned, I do try to utilize the stone to its fullest — and this big hand just came from that process. I also wanted to get across the idea that, no matter what slips that nature might throw at you, we can overcome any obstacle if we try hard enough. Here we see this out there happily hunting seals — and he is doing very well in spite of his enormous hand.

Michael Massie

Michael Massie

Michael Massie


Inuit, Métis

Happy Valley - Goose Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

(1962- )

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.