AKOS presents the monumental works of spray can art by Haida artist, Corey Bulpitt. This solo exhibition is a remarkable, natural fusion between Hip Hop and Haida cultures.
AKOS is Corey Bulpitt's graffiti tag. Taakeit G'aaya, his Haida name, translates to "Gifted Carver". Both names reveal two art forms that have successfully come together through this exhibition. For over 20 years, Bulpitt has been developing his skills as an artist – beginning as a graffiti artist in the 90's. At the age of 15, he immersed himself in DJing, MCing, breaking and graffiti, key elements of Hip Hop culture. At age 20, he returned to Haida Gwaii for a four-year apprenticeship under Haida master carver Christian White. His mentorship included the study of Haida social structure, clan structure, oral history, 2D art and 3D carving, ancestral music and dance.
Graffiti and Haida formline design share many of the same artistic values; continuous flow that expands and compresses, balance in design, colour, positive and negative; narrative, reflective of society and of social status. Selected works pay homage to the artistic design and skills of Haida ancestors. Others fuse together expressions of Haida and Hip Hop cultures, and reveal a vivid connection to formline and the freedom of graffiti.
In the words of Curator, Kwiaahwah Jones, "An artist requires a special talent to be able to first learn the rules, and then break them in the proper way. AKOS provides a creative meeting point for the past, present and future".
June 5, 2014 to February 15, 2015