Origo Club is proud to present Bob Gunning‘s “Preserving the History of Ninstints” from September 28th – October 27th, 2019.

Ninstints (SG̱ang Gwaay Llanagaay), now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, was once part of the community of 26 Haida villages scattered throughout Haida Gwaii. The totem poles there make the largest collection of Haida artwork still in their original location. They are carved with great bears, eagles, whales and other powerful symbols of the Haida and each has details that signify the life and status of the chief.  The Haida believe that each chiefs’ spirit would enter a pole and be released only when the wood would rot and return to the earth. These poles are therefore sacred to the local people and they are a disappearing treasure, with only about 10 out of over 30 poles still standing intact in the village.

Part of artist Bob Gunning’s purpose in painting these poles is to preserve them in the only way that they can remain with us, through art.  They must eventually return to the earth, but their power and beauty should live on, reminding us of the cycle of life. The Haida and their ancestors have lived in these islands for almost 7000 years. They are part of our heritage and these paintings are a way to keep the history of these great symbols alive.

The Opening Reception will be held on Saturday September 28th, 2019 from 2-4pm with the artist in attendance.

Artist’s Talk on Saturday October 12th, 2019 from 2-4pm.

Gallery hours are Tue – Sun 11am-7pm. Free admission.

Artist Bio

Bob Gunning went to university in Windsor, Ontario. While he spent some time on the East Coast, in Halifax, he has resided here on the West Coast since the ’80s. Bob is a realist painter so there’s a great deal of detail in all of his works. He finds inspiration in nature, its bright colours and shapes, and the contrasts between the natural design and the structures with which we surround ourselves. He has a great interest in the totem poles of the Pacific Northwest and particularly those at Ninstints in Haida Gwaii.
Bob has shown his work at the Arts Council of Surrey Gallery in Newton, and at the Plaskett Gallery in New Westminster, the libraries in both Surrey and New Westminster. His work also has been juried into shows at the Seymour Gallery, the Tsawassen Art Gallery and in two shows at the Federation of Canadian Artists Gallery on Granville Island.