Yesterday my dogs and I took a drive up to Cranberry Portage to visit my carver friend Irvin Head. Irvin owns and operates an Art Gallery called Northern Buffalo Sculptures and he bides his time between there and his studio down by the lake. When I got to the gallery I found his wife Lisa running the place while Irvin helped some people take down a few teepee's to ship up to the site of the Guy Indian school at Clearwater Lake, where there was going to be a gathering. These two people were instrumental in organizing the construction of what is currently the world's largest teepee. It is a wonderful site to behold and an asset to the Canadian north. Already there have been numerous events held at this site and it is rapidly becoming a popular tourist site.
I wanted to see Irvin to get some photos of him and his studio as I am planning on doing a series of paintings honoring the north and its people. I recently received a grant from the Manitoba Arts Council to complete a project I am calling "Meditations on Northern Manitoba." Irvin is a wonderful carver and very sensitive to his materials and surroundings. He has begun to gather stone from the land around him and is excited about creating pieces that speak of their roots. For those of you who don't know, the rock in these parts is very old and hard and require quite a bit of labour to fashion. I am excited about his venture and wish him well.