In the main, my previous images of people have been more stylized and perhaps more abstract. With this one I felt it about time I tried a more realistic figure. The nice thing about working in the anhydrite, is that it is a free material for me (as the old quarry is close). By that I mean, I can happily remove a large amount of stone when carving and not be fearful that I am just turning money into stone dust!
The shape of the stone allowed me to position the figure so his body is bent down to his knees. The first idea that came to mind once I saw that, was a seal hunter leaning over a breathing-hole used by a seal. I opted out of any kind of base to go with this because I wanted the emphasis to be completely on the seal hunter. I wanted him to have that expression of excitement and concentration. He has waited a long time for this moment… that moment when he knows that it is the seal about to come up to the hole for air. He is ready and waiting!
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.
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