This print was especially commissioned by the Spirit Wrestler Gallery to commemorate the Manawa—Pacific Heartbeat exhibition.
The idea for this unique print collaboration originated at the Te Mata:
Gathering of Contemporary Indigenous Visual Artists (January 2005) held at
the Toimairangi School of Visual Culture in Hastings, Aotearoa (New
Zealand). Joe David met printmaker Mike Samuel at the gathering and they
quickly became friends as well as being inspired by each other’s
work. Initial experiments were done together with the goal of completing
this image for the Manawa exhibition.
Joe David returned to Aotearoa (November 2005) to produce the design on the metal plate and then Michael completed the image with the moko (tattoo) designs and printed the images. The print captures the essence of the Pacific connection with two great artists from the Northwest Coast and the Maori working together.
Lightning Strike refers to the supernatural spear that snakes it way to the most vulnerable spot of the whale and thrown by a Nuu-chah-nulth whaler
whose hair is tied in the traditional topknot of the whalers’ society.