7" Arctic Char Fish by Master Derrald Taylor
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Inuit Art: Arctic Char Fish
Artist: Derrald Taylor
Dimensions: 7" long, 4" wide, 3" deep
Community: Tuktoyaktuk, North West Territories
This is our absolute favorite piece in the gallery.
When subjected to light, the translucent stones ghostly echo springs to life in an explosion of magnificent colour.
This Char fish effortlessly flows from head to tail. The color is a gorgeous golden stone with beautiful veins glazed throughout. I love the movements of this char as it is very intense and life like.
Taylor has earned himself a spot among the ranks of today's top master carvers like Damien Iqualla, Ruben Komangapik and others. His sense of motion, dynamics and movement are exceptional and a testament to the talents one must posses to be considered among the greats.
Taylor's pieces have toured world wide, have been included in countless publications, Inuit art journals, exhibitions and museums.
The dynamic movement and translucent coloration of this Char fish are formidable combinations which make this an exceptional piece. Even though I have seen several char fish over the years, Taylor somehow manages to make this particular one its own. Quite unique, very modernist with a touch of minimalist style. The posture, facial expression and stone makes this iconic Northern sea creature the masterpiece that it deserves to be.
Taylor has stated a preference for working with harder varieties of stone, such as serpentine or chlorite because it allows for a greater degree of detail in the pieces. Additionally he has worked with muskox horn, whalebone and marble. When beginning a sculpture Taylor’s method is to accentuate the natural shape of the stone and economize on material use . Earlier in his career Taylor carved subjects such as animals, drum dancers and hunters, or things that he saw in his daily life. In the past he stated that he felt hesitant about carving Sedna and other Inuit oral traditions because he felt he lacked the understanding to represent those stories, but he has recently started to carve them .Taylor has been a regular exhibitor at the Great Northern Arts Festival since 1998. He also participated in other arts festivals across Canada and the United States. Taylor’s practice is based out of Frozen Rock Studio in Yellowknife, NT. Recently the studio began a public workshop to teach visitors about carving techniques and the indigenous traditions of the region .
1. “Echo Hanoche: Painter, Illustrator, Jeweller,” Nunatsiavut: Mobilizing Inuit Cultural Heritage, accessed February 14, 2018. http://www.michnunatsiavut.org/echo-henoche.html.
 Nathalie Helberg-Harrison, “Bobby’s Legacy,” Tusaayaksat, Spring 2016: 53.
 Kate McCarthy, “Interview with Derrald Taylor (Tuktoyaktuk),” by phone, IAF offices to Yellowknife, February 8th, 2000.
 McCarthy, “Interview,” 2000.
 Kirsten Murphy, "Yellowknife stone-carving studio to offer public workshops", CBC News, last updated January 16, 2018, http://www.cbc.ca/beta/news/canada/north/yellowknife-stone-carving-studio