Spirit Wrestler Gallery (Vancouver, Canada)

“me, my spirit, and eye”


I’ve heard and read stories of “helping spirits” and I’ve always wondered if I have any helping spirits and what mine are.

With all the wondering and daydreaming that I do to do what I do, I sometimes use the owl and the walrus as my helping spirits. Not so much as to their physical abilities, but because the two can be used together in one image because of the shapes of their faces. The wide shape of the walrus snout and the disc shape face of the owl can be combined. In this piece I decided to have the person’s face to be half-owl and half-human… he is in thought, not with both eyes open, but with the one eye staring straight ahead and in thought. Similar to those who believe the center of their being is in the belly-button region.

—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.