Monday, October 19, 2009

Nicholas Galanin Oblique Drift

grunt gallery, Vancouver, Presents:

Oblique Drift
Nicholas Galanin
October 23, 2009 – December 12, 2009
Opening – Friday Oct. 23rd, 8pm grunt gallery

Artist talk Saturday, October 24, 2009, 2:00 - 3:30 pm,
Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art
630 Hornby Street, Vancouver, British Columbia

Alaskan artist Nicholas Galanin brings his transformative work to grunt gallery, which extends from his series, 'The Imaginary Indian' a series that juxtaposes manufactured Northwest Coast masks and French toile. Galanin explores the authentic and inauthentic and how interpretation, appropriation and "cultural drift " inform Northwest Coast art . Showcasing new works from The Curtis Legacy Galanin strips masks, bodies and meaning down to reveal that ,"The real strength in survival of indigenous knowledge and culture lies within the ability to freely and creatively represent ourselves." Shifting the colonial gaze from ethnography to pin-up The Curtis Legacy series includes nude models wearing Indonesian made Tlingit masks, referencing Edward Curtis photographs of the noble savage, these works lay bare the objectification of both the body and the sacred . Both series of works are brought together in Galnin's examination of gloablized culture(s), freedom of cultural expression and the manifestations of change in a world of shifting cultures and ancestral echoes.

Nicholas Galanin was born in Sitka, Alaska, Nicholas Galanin has struck an intriguing balance between his origins and the course of his practice. Having trained extensively in 'traditional' as well as 'contemporary' approaches to art, he pursues them both in parallel paths. His stunning bodies of work simultaneously preserve his culture and explore new perceptual territory. Galanin comes from a long line of Northwest Coast artists, starting with his great-grandfather, who sculpted in wood, down through his father, who works in both precious metal and stone. Galanin studied at the London Guildhall University, where he received a Bachelor's of Fine Arts with honors in Jewelry Design and Silversmithing. Soon after, Galanin discovered a graduate arts program at Massey University in New Zealand that meshed perfectly with his interests and concerns, and in 2004 he began earning a Master's degree there in Indigenous Visual Arts. Valuing his culture as highly as his individuality, Galanin has created an unusual path for himself. He deftly navigates "the politics of cultural representation," as he balances both ends of the aesthetic spectrum. With a fiercely independent spirit, Galanin has found the best of both worlds and has given them back to his audience in stunning form.

For More Information Please Contact:
Demian Petryshyn
Programming and Communications Coordinator
604.875.9516 /

grunt gallery
116 - 350 E. 2nd
Vancouver, BC V5T 4R8

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