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A. Traviss Corry

The Eagle Chief of eclectic art discusses his inspirations

Traviss Corry is a Vancouver-based Canadian artist who grew up around the same area as the Kwakwaka'wakw people. He's a true talent with an eagle eye for perfection. The chemistry between experimental expression, spontaneity and attention to detail makes his art form extremely affecting. In fact, exposure to A.Traviss Corry and his artistry leaves you thoroughly sated in profound emotional experience.

Dazed Digital: Apart from being your native country, what's the best thing about Canada?
A. Traviss Corry: It's an untouched, ancient wilderness. I think the fact that I started from this wild, sincere place, continues to be a strength in my work.

DD: What's the most important thing you'd like to manifest with your artworks?
ATC: I want to create vivifying experiences for people. I'm always hoping to help people hold a state of enlivened, opened consciousness when contemplating my work.

DD: Do you have scheduled work hours?
ATC: Not particularly. I usually do computer work, and prep in the morning; physical painting and such in the evening.

DD: How do you usually begin the work process?
ATC: I begin with a defined goal and spend much time in preparation. Then I work intuitively and quickly in flow.

DD: What are your inspiration sources?
ATC: Archetypal motifs of consciousness and mythology. I love stripping concepts to their simplest, most elegant, elemental form.

DD: Do you find 3D and installation art more radical and more direct than the 2D form?
ATC: I play work in three dimensions to mess with the viewer's sense of dimension. It distracts from representational forms the viewer might get stuck on in abstractions. I'm also interested in working with texture and 3D as a kind of almost baroque ornamentation, that is elaborate, sensual, and organic, connecting nature with opulence, which I think is important and needed in the world now. People need to connect the sensual organic with what it really is... luxury and pleasure. My Sechelt Bark Harvest, or Thousand Year Installation, was about ancient sacred practices, and electronic social media. I harvest bark for my gallery work. The harvesting involves ritual and sometimes ceremony. It's an ancient method of harvesting wood that does not take the life of a tree.

DD: How important is it to influence other people by illustrating and questioning through the art?
ATC: The last thing I want to do is preach. I wouldn't presume to be qualified to educate either. As an artist I am able to give people an emotional experience of something. People are contemplating the loss of salmon in the world now. Being surrounded by a swirling projected mass of circling salmon, gives you a visceral understanding of a fish farm and of salmon and of a power related to the cycles of nature that is beyond words.

DD: What caught your interest when you began studying the art of The Kwakwaka'wakw Nations?
ATC: I grew up amongst the Kwakwaka'wakw cultures; Salish kids mostly. Many of my best friends lived on reserves. When I was young, their culture's art was the most sophisticated and alive art that I was exposed to. My cultural background is European, and my work comes out of those traditions, influenced heavily by the fact that I was raised in multicultural communities. I would never presume to connect myself with first nation's culture on any level other than influential. Kwakwaka'wakw art was the most profound outside influence on me. It resonates with me because it is the genre that best speaks of the land from which I come and feel connected to. My childhood playgrounds were ancient rain forests, with trees as old as two thousand years. The sounds of raven language echoed through the wet, moss and fern covered ravines, in which I spent my childhood evenings, building tree forts, fishing and picking wild foods. The human art that evolved naturally from this environment over thousands of years is full of its energies. Its mythologies speak to me on a real level.

DD: Tell me about the future....
ATC: Artistic collaboration through social media via the internet and mobile devices is just beginning. I think we'll see some very interesting global art movements happening as artists bypass traditional channels of representation and venues.