Laurence Knowles

Grizzly Bear Mask by Laurence Knowles


Grizzly Bear Mask, carved by Haida artist Laurence Knowles.Red Cedar, cedar bark and articulated eyes.13″ x 11″ x 9″. c.2006

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Laurence Knowles is currently living and working in the Haida village of Old Masset on Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands).  His first art show was at 8 years old when he submitted a drawing of Jimmy Hendrix into a group exhibition in Prince Rupert.  Knowles continued to pursue art spending a year studying at the Kitanmaax School of Northwest Coast Indian Art located near Hazelton, British Columbia, although the majority of his skill has been gathered by working under other carvers.  He has been working with Lyle Campbell, Henry Green, Ron Tellik, Christian White and Jimmy Heart.  Knowles interests lie primarily in stone carving emphasizing the long tradition of the use of the stone in the production of bowls, clubs and tools.  He is involved in an attempt to redefine the relevance of stone particularly in tool making.  Stone had traditionally been the medium used for tools and weapons, however with the introduction of steel these practices have been virtually wiped out.

Knowles’ work can be found both in private gallery collections in Skidegate and Prince Rupert, as well as in public spaces on the grounds of The Museum of Prince Rupert and Meadows Park in Whistler.  The Meadows park public art project encompasses three Basal stone carvings, Bear, Medicine Man and Creek Woman, located on the park valley trail.