Twisted Path III, Meet the Artists

Mask by Shane Perley-Dutcher
We are now less than one month away from the opening of our new feature exhibit, Twisted Path III, Questions of Balance. Art work is coming in, and as we continue to introduce you to the incredibly talented group of artist participating in this exhibit, we are delighted to share a little more about the artists. We look forward to seeing you when the exhibit opens!

Shane Perley-Dutcher

Shane Perley-Dutcher is Wolastoq from the Tobique Maliseet First Nation and as a child was given the spirit name “Aduksis.” Aduksis translated from the Maliseet language means little deer. Shane’s passion for creativity has inspired his journey as an artist. “Creativity has been my heart beat since I was a child. Over the years, the beat has found many rhythms. Creative energy is transferable and keeps me balanced, without it life changes for me.” 
In 2000, Shane graduated with honors and distinction from the New Brunswick College of Craft and design jewelry manufacturing/metal arts program. In 2006 he formed Aduksis Jewellery Designs as a product of his creativity. Shane’s business focuses on a balance of cultural richness and aesthetic appeal. “I want you to see a product that has a life behind it, every piece from Aduksis Jewellery Design has a connection to Maliseet culture. Sharing the historical and cultural aspects of my jewellery/art is a source of pride for me and for Aduksis Jewellery Designs.” 

Basket by Shane Perley-Dutcher
Statement for Twisted Path III: 

Balance is a lifelong journey. The pieces created for Twisted Path III, Questions of Balance reflect the struggles of our people, our identity. Recognizing that I live much differently than my ancestors, I face challenges they did not have. I was not brought up making traditional artwork - I learned through my own artistic journey. The fight to keep traditional knowledge alive is present in the production of aboriginal artwork itself. My connection to the land is sacred. I need the land for my spiritual and mental well-being. Every ash basket, metal basket, birch basket, birchbark canoe, wooden mask, and piece of jewelry I've made has come from a place of love and respect for my culture.

I feel like a walking contradiction because I consider the land sacred, but at the same time I live in a way that disrespects that relationship. Twisted Path, to me, means that we live in a world that is full of contradictions on many levels. Balance in the face of contradictions is a daily exercise - I am still pushing forward knowing I am evolving as a Maliseet and as an artist. In my culture we believe in lifelong learning, and it is through this principle that I am learning how to find balance in the twisted path I face every day. 

Nicholas Galanin
Get Comfortable, 2012, Digital print

Born in Sitka, Alaska, Nicholas Galanin, Tlingit/Aleut, has struck an intriguing balance between his origins and the course of his practice. Having trained in "traditional" as well as "contemporary" approached to art, he pursues them both in parallel paths. His stunning bodies of work simultaneously preserve his culture and explore new perceptual territory. 

Galanin studied at the London Guildhall University, where he received a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts with honors in Jewelry Design and Silversmithing and at Massey University in New Zealand, earning a Master’s degree 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. 

Statement for Twisted Path III

The State of Being, Displaced, 2013, Digital print

Culture cannot be contained as it unfolds. My art enters this stream at many different points, looking backwards, looking forwards, generating its own sound and motion. I am inspired by generations of Tlingit creativity and contribute to this wealthy conversation through active curiosity. There is no room in this exploration for the tired prescriptions of the "Indian Art World" and its institutions. Through creating I assert my freedom.

Concepts drive my medium. I draw upon a wide range of indigenous technologies and global materials when exploring an idea. Adaptation and resistance, lies and exaggeration, dreams, memories, and poetic views of daily life—these themes recur in my work, taking form through sound, texture, and image. Inert objects spring back to life; kitsch is reclaimed as cultural renewal; dancers merge ritual and rap. I am most comfortable not knowing what form my next idea will take, a boundless creative path of concept-based motion.