For the past few months I have been enjoying making more realistic images in stone. After the last piece - “seal hunter” - I was searching the Internet for images on harpoons and came across an image of an Inuit hunter in the process of throwing his harpoon. I was studying his stance and the position of his hands and thought - “this is an image I can make next”. So I then found a stone that allowed me to achieve the correct stance.
In the image that I had found, the hunter was leaning back a bit more and the hand holding the harpoon was a little different, but outside of that is is very similar. I chose to inlay the face and hands to give it more of a contrast to the stone and to have a little more realism through the colour of the wood (birch). As for the harpoon, I decided to go with one that had a slight curve to it to give a more interesting line to the form.
In essence, I was trying for the look of the hunter just as he lifts the harpoon and getting the proper balance of it in his hand before he throws it - all the while staring at the walrus who is about to come to the surface.
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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