Spirit Wrestler Gallery (Vancouver, Canada)

“qui vive”


I’ve been thinking of Owls lately - and that I haven’t made one in quite a while. I have had this piece of stone sitting on my bench for years and have always liked it’s shape - but could never think of what to make from it. I was on Facebook one evening and a friend of mine posted a video of an Owl on a post and it had its wings out-stretched in a defensive pose. Ironically, it was the same shape as the piece of stone I have had sitting around for some time.

So, there it was! I just had to remove the stone that was needed to achieve the shape! That being said, as I am working on a piece, I’m usually thinking of a title. This one was a challenge, as I am always trying to come-up with a title that best describes the piece’s expression. I had a title in mind but, wasn’t too keen on it, The day of packing up the piece I took out my dictionary looking for the meaning of one of the words in the title I had just come up with… and lo and behold, there was another word that better described the piece; “qui vive” - 1. who goes there? 2. on the alert; watchful. These were the meanings for “qui vive”. Perfect! So that is how this title came to be!

—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.