Preston Singletary Exhibition Catalogue

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PRESTON SINGLETARY HUMANITY AT THE CROSSROAD JUNE 20,2020 - AUGUST 1, 2020

SANDRA AINSLEY GALLERY


SANDRA AINSLEY GALLERY 100 Sunrise Ave, Unit 150, Toronto, Ontario, M4A1B3 contact@sandraainsleygallery sandraainsleygallery.com 416 - 214 - 9490


PR ESTON S I NG L ETARY HUMANITY AT THE CROSSROAD JUNE 20,2020 - AUGUST 1, 2020 SANDRA AINSLEY GALLERY

PHOTO CREDIT: JULIEN CAPMEIL


PRESTON S ING L E TARY When I began working with glass in 1982, I had no idea that I’d be so connected to the material in the way that I am. It was only when I began to experiment with using designs from my Tlingit cultural heritage that my work began to take on a new purpose and direction.

Over time, my skill with the material of glass and traditional form line design has strengthened and evolved, allowing me to explore more fully my own relationship to both my culture and chosen medium. This evolution, and subsequent commercial success, has positioned me as an influence on contemporary indigenous art. Through teaching and collaborating in glass with other Native American, Maori, Hawaiian, and Australian Aboriginal artists, I’ve come to see that glass brings another dimension to indigenous art. The artistic perspective of indigenous people reflects a unique and vital visual language that has connections to the ancient codes and symbols of the land, and this interaction has informed and inspired my own work.

My work with glass transforms the notion that Native artists are only best when traditional materials are used. It has helped advocate on the behalf of all indigenous people -- affirming that we are still here -- that that we are declaring who we are through our art in connection to our culture.

My work continues to evolve and connect my personal cultural perspective to current modern art movements, and I have received much attention for striving to keep the work fresh and relevant. I have been honored that my success has inspired other artists from underrepresented indigenous cultures to use glass and other non-traditional materials in their work, and hope that I can continue to encourage more innovation in this area as my career progresses.


COV ID 1 9 STAT E M E N T “During this time of quarantine and uncertainty, we have been forced to contemplate life going forward. As an artist these things come out in different ways. For me it’ s been about keeping my family together, focused and safe. On the other side of that, I’ve found ample amount of uninterrupted time to make art. My home, Seattle has become one of the epicenters for the virus, and so this period of time has given me plenty of time to think about things.

The title of the show Humanity At A Crossroad came to me at the last minute. It felt appropriate to title the show this is how it feels. We have a real opportunity to set things right, or we could fail as a species. Some of the pieces in this show are a culmination/collaboration of my connection with Joe David who is a mentor to me. These guardian spirit figures represent a protection of sorts. They refer back to effigies that were created out of a need for connecting to an intangible force, and one that guides us.

With the mentors and ancestors behind us, these objects can be considered a powerful extension of our Native community. A fresh voice from the past reminding us that these ancient codes and symbols have existed since time immemorial and come to life in new ways with new materials. I hope that this work guides us in the right direction, and that we can be inclusive with humility and compassion. “

Preston Singletary May 2020


Raven in the Beginning of Time, 18.5” x 15” x 8”



Transforming Spiritual Power, 26.75” x 8” x 15”



Loon Under the Moon, 24.25” x 9” x 4.5”



Spirit Bowl, 6.5” x 12 7/8” x 7”



Frog, 22.75” x 9” x 3”



Creative Journey, 11” x 26” x 5”



Journey Across The Fire, 28” x 12” x 6”



Indian Curio Shelf 14” x 56” x 14” per shelf Photo Credit: Spike Mafford



PRESTON SINGLETARY IN COLLABORATION WITH JOE DAVID

PHOTO COURTESY OF MUSEUM OF GLASS, TACOMA, WASHINGTON


My Tlingit name is Cochane. I’m from the Eagle moiety, the Kagwaantan, box house group, and my family’s clan symbol is the Killer Whale and the Brown Bear, we also are related to the Wolf. In the Summer of 2000 I befriended Joe David (Nu Chah Nulth), a respected and established carver from Vancouver Island.

That summer we worked on glass together at the Pilchuck Glass School. I’d been focusing on Northwest coast, and Tlingit styles of art with glass and getting some momentum with my work. When I met Joe David, he exposed me to the sweat lodge ceremony and opened my eyes to Native spirituality as well as deepened my onnection to my culture. He shared his name with me which was a unique honor today as it was in the old days.

Joe David also opened my eyes to the minutia of details that informs the work that I do today. From the graphic style to the symbolism and intent. We have traveled the world together, and have worked on many significant projects over the years. His guidance has given immeasurable confidence and we continue to pursue new ideas which is evident in this select body of work.

These guardian spirit figures are very special pieces. They are mentor and mentee collaborations and should be regarded as evolutionary objects with deep roots to the past, but transformed into the medium from the present.

One of Joe’s insights and motivations in working with glass is that the materials we use for the traditional arts are becoming increasingly rare. So you will start to see artists using new mediums to keep the stories alive. Glass is a symbol of transformation. Transforming from a liquid to a solid, and transforming our culture by bringing another dimension to it. Glass embodies fragility and permanence at the same time. The potential for these pieces to survive hundreds and thousands of years is real. We are keeping the symbols and codes to our culture alive in a new material.

Thank you,

Preston Singletary


Fire Keeper, 38.5” x 10.5” x 6”



Octopus Hunter, 36.75” x 10.5” x 6”



Feather Keeper 41” x 10.5” x 6.5”



The Man Who Stands In Front, 39” x 10” x 5”



PR ESTON S ING LETA RY T L I NG IT GLA S S A RT IST EDUCATION 1984-99 The Pilchuck Glass School, Stanwood, WA. Studied with Lino Tagliapietra, Checco Ongaro, Benjamin Moore, Dorit Brand, Judy Hill, Dan Daily, and Pino Signoretto

AWARDS 2019

Artist Laureate – The Rainier Club, Seattle, WA.

2018

Governor’s Arts Award – Individual, Washington State Arts Commission, Olympia, WA

2016

National Artist Fellowship Award, Native Arts & Culture Foundation, Vancouver, WA

2013

Mayor’s Art Award for “Raising the Bar”, Seattle, WA

2010

Honorary doctorate, University of Puget Sound, Tacoma, WA

2009

National Native Artist Exchange Award, New England Foundation for the Arts, Boston, MA

2004

1st Place Contemporary Art, Sealaska Heritage Foundation, “Celebration 2004,” AK

2003

Rakow Commission, Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, NY

2002

Seattle Arts Commission, Purchase Award, Seattle, WA.

PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS 2019

Sealaska Heritage Institute, Juneau, AK – Cultural Arts Commitee

2009 - current

IslandWood environmental school, Bainbridge Island, WA – Board of Directors

2008

Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe, NM - Community Advisory Committee

2005 - 2011

Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, WA - Board of Trustees and Community Advisory Committee

2000 - current

Pilchuck Glass School, Seattle, WA - Board of Trustees and Community Advisory Committee

SOLO GALLERY EXHIBITIONS 2020

Traver Gallery, Seattle, WA. – Artifacts from a Future Dream Blue Rain Gallery, Santa Fe, NM - New Works in Glass Sandra Ainsley Gallery, Toronto, Ontario Canada

2019

Blue Rain Gallery, Santa Fe, NM – New Works in Glass Traver Gallery, Seattle, WA – Illuminated Forest

2018

Stonington Gallery, Seattle, WA – Raven’s Treasures Blue Rain Gallery, Santa Fe, NM – Mystic Knowledge Traver Gallery, Seattle, WA – The Air World


2017

Spirit Wrestler Gallery, Vancouver, Canada – Pacific Currents Traver Gallery, Seattle, WA – Premonitions of Water Schantz Gallery, Stockbridge, MA – Mystic Figures Blue Rain Gallery, Santa Fe, NM – Journey Through Air to the Sky World

2016

Traver Gallery, Seattle, WA – Journey Across the Fire (and Into the World) Blue Rain Gallery, Santa Fe, NM – New Works

2014

Traver Gallery, Seattle, WA – He Who Spins Illusions Blue Rain Gallery, Santa Fe, NM – New Works

2013

Traver Gallery, Seattle, WA – Listen for the Raven Blue Rain Gallery, Santa Fe, NM – New Works

2012

Traver Gallery, Seattle, WA – Confluence

2011

Traver Gallery, Tacoma, WA – Contents of a Dream Schantz Gallery, Stockbridge, MA – Collector’s Weekend Showcase

2009

Traver Gallery, Seattle, WA – Beyond Primitivism Blue Rain Gallery, Santa Fe NM – Solo Exhibition

2007

William Traver Gallery, Tacoma, WA - The Uncle Who Went into the Forest

2006

Heller Gallery, New York, NY - Raven Steals the Light

2004

Instituto Veneto di Scienze Lettere de Arti, Venice, Italy – Vetri. Nel Mondo. Oggi. Boreal Traditions, Anchorage, AK - Solo Exhibition

2002 2001

Blue Rain Gallery, Santa Fe, NM - Solo Exhibition

Chappell Gallery, New York – Solo Exhibition, Glass Potlatch


SELECT MUSEUM EXHIBITIONS 2018 - 2021

Museum of Glass, Tacoma, WA – Solo traveling exhibition – “Preston Singletary: Raven and the Box of Daylight”, traveling to The Wichita Art Museum (2020) and The National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC. (2020) and the Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, VA. Fall (2021).

2016

Château-Musée de Boulogne-sur-Mer, France - Group Exhibition - “D’une culture a l’autre” (From One Culture to Another).

2015 - 2016

Museum of Northwest Art, WA – Group exhibition – “Not Vanishing: Contemporary Expressions in Indigenous Art”, 1977-2015.

2009 - 2012

Museum of Glass, Tacoma, WA – Solo exhibition – “Preston Singletary: Echoes, Fire, and Shadows”. Traveled to: National Museum of the American Indian, New York, NY; Heard Museum, Phoenix, AZ; Anchorage Museum at Rasmussen Center, Anchorage, AK

2011

Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience, Seattle, WA – Group

2010

John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sheboygan, WI – Group exhibition – “Animal Instincts”.

2009

McMichael Canadian Art Collection, Vaughan, Ontario, Canada– Group exhibition –

exhibition – “Cultural Confluence: Urban People of Asian and Native American Heritages”.

“Challenging Traditions: Contemporary First Nations Art of the Northwest Coast”. Traveled to: The Olympic Museum, Lausanne, Switzerland, and The Reach Gallery, Vancouver, BC, Canada. 2005

Museum of Art + Design, New York, NY – Group exhibition – “Changing Hands: Art Without Reservation”.

2004

National Museum of the American Indian, Washington, DC – Group exhibition – “Our Universe”.

2003

Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, WA – Solo exhibition, “Threshold”. Museum of Craft & Folk Art, San Francisco, CA – Group exhibition – “Fusing Traditions: Transformations in Glass by Native American Artists”. Traveled to: Heard Museum, Phoenix, AZ; The Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, University of Washington, Seattle, WA; Rockwell Museum of Western Art, Corning, NY; Craft and Folk Art Museum, Los Angeles, CA; Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History, Santa Cruz, CA; Anchorage Museum at Rasmussen Center, Anchorage, AK; Alaska State Museum, Juneau, AK; Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center, Mashantucket, CT.


PUBLIC ART COMMISIONS 2020

In Progress – Untitled, Preston Singletary & David Franklin, New Seattle Arena, Seattle, WA.

2019

In Progress – Untitled, Preston Singletary & David Franklin, Puyallup Sound Transit, Puyallup Sounder Station. Puyallup, WA. In Progress – “Petrel Guards the Water” & “Raven Stealing the Water”, Preston Singletary & David Franklin, steel and glass, Fremont Ship Canal, Seattle, WA. Office of Arts & Culture, Seattle, WA. “The Weaver’s Welcome”. Preston Singletary, David Franklin, Brian Perry and Anthony Jones Sr. Bronze and glass. The Burke Museum, Seattle, WA.

2018

“Dancing Staff” – Preston Singletary & David Franklin, steel and glass, NW 11th and Hoyt, Portland, OR “Northern Lights: Split Eagle & Raven Sunrise” – Preston Singletary & David Franklin, painted glass panels, Boney Courthouse, Anchorage, AK

2015

“Clan House” – Glass panels and cast glass house posts. Sealaska Heritage Institute, Juneau, AK

2011

“Transformations” – Wall panels of steel and glass. Seattle University, Seattle, WA

2008

“Clan House” – Wall panel and house posts of cast glass. Museum of Glass, Tacoma, WA

2004

“Raven Steals the Sun” – Glass sculpture with fiber optic lighting. National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC

2003

“Keet Shagoon” – Cast glass panels. Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, WA

2000

“Pilchuck Founder’s Totem Pole” – Totem pole with cast glass and neon elements. Pilchuck Glass School, Stanwood, WA.

SELECT COLLECTIONS Anchorage Museum at Rasmussen Center, Anchorage, AK

Harborview Medical Center, Seattle, WA

The Autry National Center, Los Angeles, CA

Imagine Museum, St. Petersburg, FL.

Château-Musée de Boulogne-sur-Mer, France

Microsoft Art Collection, Redmond, WA.

The British Museum, London, UK

Mint Museum of Art & Design, Charlotte, NC

The Brooklyn Museum of Art, Brooklyn, NY

Museum of Art + Design, New York, NY

The Burke Museum of Natural and Cultural History,

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA

University of Washington, Seattle, WA

Museum of Glass, Tacoma, WA

City of Seattle, Portable Works Collection, Seattle, WA

The Museum of Natural History, Anchorage, AK

Corning Museum of Glass, Corning NY (Rakow Commission)

National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian

Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, CA

Institution, Washington D.C.

Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO

National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh, UK

Ethnografiska Museet, Stockholm, Sweden

National Museum of Wildlife Art, Jackson, WY

Detroit Institute of the Arts, Detroit, MI

Newark Museum, Newark, NJ

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA

Rockwell Museum, Corning, NY

Fred Jones, Jr, Museum of Art, University of Oklahoma,

Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, WA

Norman, OK

St. Paul’s Cathedral, Oklahoma City, OK

Group Health Cooperative, Seattle, WA

Washington State Arts Commission, Olympia, WA


SANDRA AINSLEY GALLERY 100 Sunrise Ave, Unit 150, Toronto, Ontario, M4A1B3 contact@sandraainsleygallery sandraainsleygallery.com 416 - 214 - 9490