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“The Archer is a representation of a traditional Aboriginal archer kneeling in a stance aiming at tmixw (animal) in order to provide for his family and community. He carries a medicine pouch to offer gratitude and honour for tmixw who has offered his life.”
Okanagan artist Clint George had no doubt in his mind when considering his entry for this years show.
As he explains, “Last October I was invited to attend the Yecheon World Archery Festival in South Korea which showcases traditional archery from around the world. It was a great honour and I am now a member of the World Traditional Archery Team. So I figured my sculpture has to combine two passions, while also celebrating my heritage.”
He has done so exceedingly well. His riveting metal work, primarily tubular, depicts a traditional Aboriginal archer down on one knee, bow fully pulled back about to release his arrow. Two feathers hang from his head-band. He carries a quiver full of arrows, a knife sheathed behind him. Wearing just a loincloth, the warrior is alert, tensed and muscular. His other leg stretches parallel to the ground providing balance.
The hunter carries a medicine pouch to offer gratitude and honour for his target, the tmixw (animal) who has offered his life so that the archer’s family can eat and his community thrive. It is a beautifully balanced depiction of a past time – when First Nations were the only inhabitants of the land.
“Metal offers infinite ways it can be shaped into art, enabling me to express things that are important to me. At the same time there are certain mechanics to it that are essential and necessary. I always try to work balance and flow into my pieces, along with my own stylistic signature.” With The Archer George succeeds fantastically. It is a special work that fittingly celebrates things of primary importance to him.