March 19, 2010

New From Rande Cook

Lattimer Gallery recently received some wonderful pieces from young Kwakwaka'wakw artist, Rande Cook. While we have always carried limited edition prints by Rande, we haven't displayed many of his sculptural pieces. We are pleased to currently have a red cedar bentwood box, a yellow cedar rattle, and an elegant red cedar mask from Rande.

The open-top bent box is titled 'Abundance' and is decorated with 36 salmon-troutheads in a subtle palette of reds, blues and yellows. The design refers to the act of feasting and the role of the feast dishes and bentwood boxes during these celebrations. The rattle depicts a 'Hawk' and is noteworthy for both its clean carving and pleasing, light blue elements. While the shape, size and function of the rattle are all fairly traditional, the colour scheme and design of the piece provide it with a unique feel that can be identified in most of Rande's creations. The mask, which is a 'Tsonoqua' or 'Wild Woman' design, is similar to the rattle in that it has been created with established traits in mind, yet it contains personal details. For example, the atypical use of light brown hair and the abstract designs on the forehead and cheeks give the mask a modern feel.

Rande has apprenticed under John Livingston in wood-carving techniques, and has also received guidance from Robert Davidson. He produces jewellery in gold and silver, masks, bentwood boxes, drums, prints and paddles. Rande was strongly influenced as a child by his grandfather, Chief Yaxyagas Gus Matilpi. Rande was featured in the 'Changing Hands: Art Without Reservation 2' exhibit at the Museum of Art and Design in New York, 2005. In 2008, he had his first solo exhibition titled 'Transcending Form' at Arctic Raven Gallery in Washington State. This same year, Rande received his Kwakwaka'wakw chieftainship, inherited from his grandfather. He is just at the beginning of what promises to be a long and successful career.

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