March 23, 2016

Henry Robertson

Hereditary Chief Henry Robertson Ga-ba-baawk, known as Hank to many, was born in 1934 and left us on February 23rd, 2016. Lattimer Gallery had represented Henry for nearly thirty years. A cultural and artistic leader amongst the Haisla people, Henry began to carve at age ten and was influenced by his father, carver Gordon Robertson. He carved masks, feast bowls, and totem poles. Henry especially enjoyed carving large-scale totem poles, and he carved a totem pole for the Aboriginal Friendship Centre in Vancouver, BC. He was also responsible for the Aboriginal Pavilion at the PNE in Vancouver from 2004-2006. He was also a member of the Haisla Totem Pole Repatriation Project, and was featured in the NFB documentary Totem: The Return of the G’psgolox Pole. Henry's nephews are Haisla artists Derek Wilson, Gary Wilson, and Barry Wilson, and he has influenced them in their work. He taught and influenced numerous artists along the Northwest Coast - including the young Haisla artist featured below, Nathan Wilson - and his contributions will be sorely missed.

November 9, 2015

Northwest Coast Native Panels

Large carved panels are a staple within the Northwest Coast Native art market, but they are a contemporary art form. Bentwood boxes, poles, and masks have long been created for both cultural and artistic purposes, but decorative panels only began emerging in the 1990s. One explanation for this development lies in the fact that paintings on paper and canvas, which are pervasive in conventional art galleries, are not common within the Northwest Coast market. Carved and painted panels are a fusion of traditions: wall-mounted compositions created through carving. From the traditional to the bright and modern, Lattimer Gallery has several outstanding panels right now:

Heiltsuk artist Dean Hunt’s Hzí (Frog) Bounce is a playful 36” diameter panel comprised of light and dark greens. Representing a frog in motion, the figure appears as though it could hop right out of the wood due to the depth Dean achieved by dropping all of the negative space down by ½”. This animated sculpture is available for $6,000.00 CAD.

Tsimshian/Cree artist Phil Gray’s rectangular red cedar panel depicting two killerwhales is titled Gestation and measures  48” x 24” x 1 ¾”. Representing a mother orca and newborn orca, this deeply-carved panel contains a great amount of movement and tension. Two human figures can also be seen within this clever composition. Phil’s panel is available for $8,000.00 CAD.

Haida artist Corey Bulpitt has carved a red cedar panel titled Skaana (Killerwhale) that strongly demonstrates his tendency to create designs that extend beyond strict formline composition. This piece contains all of the classic elements of a whale design in plain oiled cedar – the head, blowhole, tail flukes – yet the dorsal fin has been superimposed across the entire composition in black and red paint. Corey’s 36” round panel is available for $6,000.00 CAD.

Kwakwaka’wakw artist Rande Cook’s Thunderbird panel contains elegant lines and fluid forms. The details within this 36” diameter panel are delightful. From the knife-finished bevelled edge to the carefully domed ovoids, this piece demonstrates Rande’s talent as both a carver and designer. Unlike many representations of the mythical Thunderbird, Rande’s appears serene with its closed beak, small horns, and tucked talon. Rande’s panel is available for $6,000.00 CAD.

October 24, 2015

David Neel Native Artist

David Neel comes from a long line of artists. Iconic Kwakwaka'wakw carver Charlie James was his great-great-great grandfather and his great uncle was prolific totem pole carver Mungo Martin. In addition, his grandmother was Ellen Neel, the first professional full-time female First Nations artist in British Columbia.
David Neel Bukwus Mask at Lattimer Gallery

Lattimer Gallery has been carrying David's work for many years, and we facilitate custom orders with him on a regular basis. From masks to wedding bands to paintings on canvas, David possesses a diverse skill set.
David Neel 14k Gold Wedding Band
David was born in 1960 and he apprenticed with Beau Dick and Wayne Alfred between 1987 and 1989. In both 1987 and 1988, Neel earned the Mungo Martin Memorial Award. In 1991, Canada Council Explorations provided him with a grant for his Contemporary Mask Series. The Smithsonian Institution awarded him a Community Scholar Grant in 1992. His photography resulted in two books about Native culture: Our Chiefs and Elders in 1992 and The Great Canoes in 1995. Like some of his prints and masks, these also dealt with contemporary First Nations history.

May 29, 2015

Nathan Wilson Grizzly Bear Mask

Lattimer Gallery has been carrying the work of young Haisla carver Nathan Wilson since 2007. He recently created an intriguing cedar mask for us titled The Grizz Who Looked Back at Me. Designed as a three-quarter profile mask rather than a frontal/symmetrical mask, this piece has a dynamism that many Northwest Coast First Nations masks lack.

Nathan said about this mask: "During a mid-April hunting trip, I was some 40km up the upper Kitamaat River valley. It had been a very uneventful day until I came to the top of a small hill. Out of nowhere, a large male Grizzly stood up from is resting spot on the side of the road! I stopped dead in my tracks as my brain was trying to process what was no more than 50 yards in front of me. He didn't seem to mind my presence, so over the course of an hour I followed him (at a safe distance, of course). Many times he stopped and looked back at me and I knew at some point I had to carve a mask of him. The experience has left me with a deeper appreciation for these animals and how intimidating a large Grizzly can be..."

May 11, 2015

Rocky Mountaineer 25th Anniversary

Lattimer Gallery has been selected to provide a variety of corporate gifts for Vancouver's Rocky Mountaineer. Rocky Mountaineer, Canada's premiere train tour operator, is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2015 and decided that Northwest Coast Native artwork would be the perfect way to acknowledge staff contributions, and to celebrate this milestone. One of the works that Rocky Mountaineer commissioned through Lattimer Gallery was a striking double-sided Red Cedar paddle carved by Kwakwaka'wakw artist Ross Henderson. Complete with Rocky Mountaineer's logo, this exquisite paddle depicts Eagle and Bear:

In addition to this incredible paddle, we also facilitated the completion of 60 custom steam-bent Red Cedar boxes by Metis/Cree artist, James Michels. Depicting both Frontal Bear and Split Eagle designs in traditional red and black, each bentwood box also sported Rock Mountaineer's logo on the lid. Lattimer Gallery frequently completes custom corporate orders such as this:

Rocky Mountaineer has been awarded the "World's Leading Travel Experience by Train" at the World Travel Awards seven times for its Gold Leaf service, has been listed among the "World's Top 25 Trains" since 2005 by The Society of International Railway Travelers, and was recognized by National Geographic Magazine as one of the "World’s Best Journeys" in 2007.

Please email Lattimer Gallery for any questions you may have regarding corporate gifting or conference award ideas: