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P R E S T O N S I N G L E TA R Y ARTIFACTS FROM A FUTURE DREAM TRAVER GALLERY

S E AT T L E

A P R I L 2 - M AY 2 , 2 0 2 0


P R E S T O N S I N G L E TA R Y ARTIFACTS FROM A FUTURE DREAM TRAVER GALLERY

S E AT T L E

A P R I L 2 - M AY 2 , 2 0 2 0


PRESTON SINGLETARY ARTIFACTS FROM A FUTURE DREAM APRIL 2 - MAY 2, 2020 TRAVER GALLERY

Artifacts from a Future Dream This show is an homage to the future generations of Indigenous people. As I create pieces and imagine themes that could evoke the spirit of my culture, it is a process. In the old days, objects were made for the opposite side of the tribe and served as a visual reminder of our shared history. The forms in this show range from traditional to abstract. New color combinations explore another perspective in my work. Raven Ascending represents the Raven at the beginning of time, commencing his adventures to find the daylight. Woodpecker toils away under the moon, while representations of bears and Killer Whales appear in different amulet style forms intended for spiritual healing. Snot boy, or Entuk, is a cultural superhero. As the story goes, a woman who was grieving the loss of a child is crying as she walks along a beach one day. Her nose is full of mucus, and she blows her nose. As she blows, her mucus lands on an empty mussel shell and begins to move, grow, and change shape. It assumes the form of a small boy and grows up to be a powerful leader in the tribe. The Transforming Killer Whale totem in opal white glass represents the name Kakawin-Chealth the name I share with Joe David. This represents the story of a supernatural white wolf who transforms into a Killer Whale and bestows power upon the man witnessing the event. Joe carved the original out of wood. He is my mentor, a revered Nu Chah Nulth elder and artist from Vancouver Island.


Fog Woman is the newest totem form that I made with the help of David Franklin - artist and carver. This piece represents the story of Raven, who married Fog Woman from the cloud world. He promised the father of that realm that he will take care of and always respect his daughter. Times became hard, and Raven became mentally abusive to her. It was a time of famine, and the woman started to twine together some cedar bark. This enraged Raven, and he became even more abusive. She told him to be patient, and over time she wove together a beautiful vessel and dipped it in the stream. Salmon appeared in the basket, and so Raven was happy again because he had something to eat. Fog woman turned away and started walking, she wanted to return to her father’s world in the sky, and as Raven chased after her, she dissipated back into the fog and returned home. The Cedar Spirit Box is a new medium, an explorative collaboration with Spike Mafford, an accomplished fine art photographer who has been a friend since childhood. We have long discussed integrating our respective mediums. This piece is an exploration of melding photography with glass sculpture. The box form would originally have been made from cedar. The radiant image of the cedar trees, stripped in the traditional way in Neah Bay, speaks to origins, and the idea of the spirit of the living cedar which abides within the honoring box. Today my work goes out into the world and is not just exclusively for my Native community. But hopefully, the objects I create inspire the next generations to explore new materials and continue to produce the forms, tell the stories, and thrive within their communities. Preston Singletary, April 2020


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Artworks, by page number: 1. STARTED UP FROM THE EARTH AS IF IN A CANOE, 2020 blown and carved glass 12.5” x 16” x 9.5” 5. TRUE KNOWLEDGE, 2020 blown and sandcarved glass 28” x 13” x 4”

14. RAVEN WATCHES OVER HIS FEAST, 2020 blown and carved glass 8” x 14” x 6.5” 15. EAGLE DISH, 2019 blown and carved glass 10” x 17” x 8.5”

6. WOODPECKER UNDER TWO MOONS, 2020 blown and sandcarved glass with bronze 40.5” x 15” x 12”

16/17. CEDAR SPIRIT BOX, 2020 Collaboration w/ Spike Mafford material needs to be added 18.5” x 14.5” x 14.5”

7. SNOT BOY, 2020 blown and carved glass 19” x 18” x 3”

18. THE PIERCING TRUTH, 2020 blown and carved glass 34.5” x 12” x 8.5”

8. SUPERNATURAL, 2020 blown and carved glass 18.25” x 8” x 14”

19. RAVEN’S EYE, 2019 blown and carved glass 18.5” x 10” x 8”

9/10. TLINGIT BASKET TRIO, 2019 blown and carved glass varying dimensions; 9.25” - 14.25” height

20/21. FOG WOMAN, 2019 cast lead crystal 35.25” x 11.5” x 7”

11/12. TRANSFORMING KILLER WHALE, 2019 cast lead crystal 35.5”h x 10”w x 10”d

22. POWER OF THE INVISIBLE, 2020 blown and carved glass 18.75” x 12” x 10”

12/13. CHIEF’S PRIZE, 2020 blown and carved glass with steel base 24.5” x 7.5” x 14”

photography by Russell Johnson all images © Preston Singletary


The art of Preston Singletary has become synonymous with the relationship between European glass blowing traditions and Northwest Native art. His artworks feature themes of transformation, animal spirits and shamanism through elegant blown glass forms and mystical sand carved Tlingit designs. Singletary learned the art of glass blowing by working with artists in the Seattle area including Benjamin Moore and Dante Marioni. As a student and assistant, he initially focused on mastering the techniques of the European tradition. His work took him to Kosta Boda (Sweden) where he studied Scandinavian design and met his future wife. Throughout his 30+ years of glass blowing experience, he has also had opportunities to learn the secrets of the Venetian glass masters by working with Italian legends Lino Tagliapietra, Cecco Ongaro, and Pino Signoretto. In 2010, he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Arts degree from the University of Puget Sound. Now recognized internationally, Singletary’s artworks are included in museum collections such as The British Museum (London, UK), The Museum of Fine Arts (Boston, MA), The Seattle Art Museum (Seattle, WA), the Corning Museum of Glass (Corning, NY), the Mint Museum of Art and Design (Charlotte, NC), the Heard Museum (Phoenix, AZ), and the Smithsonian Institution (Washington, DC). Singletary maintains an active schedule by teaching, lecturing and exhibiting internationally. In 2009, the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, WA, launched a major mid-career survey of his work, entitled “Preston Singletary: Echoes, Fire, and Shadows”. In 2018 he opened a monumental narrative exhibition with the Museum of Glass, titled “Raven and the Box of Daylight”, the exhibition, which will travel nationally, pushes the boundaries of glass as a medium for storytelling.


PRESTON SINGLETARY ARTIFACTS FROM A FUTURE DREAM APRIL 5 - 28, 2018 TRAVER GALLERY TRAVERGALLERY.COM

110 UNION STREET, #200 SEATTLE, WA 98101 206.587.6501 TRAVERGALLERY.COM

Profile for Traver Gallery

Preston Singletary Exhibition Artifacts From a Future Dream, April 2, 2020 - May 2, 2020  

This show is an homage to the future generations of Indigenous people. As I create pieces and imagine themes that could evoke the spirit of...

Preston Singletary Exhibition Artifacts From a Future Dream, April 2, 2020 - May 2, 2020  

This show is an homage to the future generations of Indigenous people. As I create pieces and imagine themes that could evoke the spirit of...

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