Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Cree Man

this is a sketch I did of a Joe Fafard sculpture I saw this weekend at the Joe Fafard exhibit at the WAG. It is truly a great exhibit. I liked it so much, that after seeing it I took my Dad to see it the very next day. I tried sketching the day before but I was just not feeling any connection between my hand and what my eyes were seeing. I tried again when I went the second time and this sketch resulted. I scanned the sketch in and used Photoshop to colour it.

Joe Fafard is a fabulous artist, if any of you in Winnipeg get a chance please go and see his exhibit. It is full of life size farm animal sculpture and caricature-like sculptures of people. There are displays and video's explaining how he produces his bronze sculpture work and lots of charcoal studies of his subject matter.
This Cree man is one of four aboriginal people he sculpted. Actually I believe one was Metis, but the point is the work he did of these people are fabulous. As happy as I am with my drawing it really does the actual sculpture not justice. The character of the faces and the exaggerated hands and veins are really fantastic to see live.

I am planning to go back many more times. I suppose I should tell you why I like Joe Fafards work so much. It has to do with the honesty the man conveys through his work. To me he has captured the essence of the life he sees around him. what you see is exactly what you get. There is no sense that he is trying to make the art itself anything else, any grander than it needs to be. I like that. It speaks to me.

I first came aware of Joe's work about 5 years ago at the Mayberry Gallery on McDermot. I would stop there after school and check out the talent. One day as I was looking around I became aware of a 2–3 ft horse, I think it was a Clydesdale... regardless I notices this horse and it was just amazing it looked thick and powerful and alive. After that I started to notice a lot of his work in the gallery, I would take a lot of pleasure just looking at the characters he sculpted. Their overly large eyes and the personality that each seemed to contain. I can always tell a great artist when I see one because I'm immediately inspired to create myself.

So what I guess I'm trying to say is, "Thanks Joe. Keep up all the great work."

Again go and check out the exhibit it is up until September.

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