In honor of our 26th Anniversary, Bill Lowe Gallery presents Ancestors: Origin & Return, a curatorial tour de force which features a rich multi-cultural and multi-media juxtaposition of significant ethnographic antiquities with powerful contemporary works of art. Our goal with this exhibition is to pictorially underscore a coherent narrative woven here over the past quarter century.
The essence of our worldview is rooted in the belief that any truly historic work of
art - from any culture, indigenous or other, and from any time in history, and regardless of media - must articulate the eternal and the universal. The materiality of the work, and the technical devices employed by the artists who create it, must serve the artist’s vision with eloquence and precision. It is our hope that this show will move the hearts, minds and souls of our audience to unprecedented dimensions.
Archaeologists have discovered exquisite expressions of humanity’s connection to a higher consciousness dating back over 35,000 years. The Pacific Ocean harbors innumerable islands where relatively isolated cultures create ceremonial sculptures, carvings, and masks that connect their people to the natural and supernatural worlds.
These concepts are displayed with pieces like the 15th century Head of Buddha and the Slit Gong drums from Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea. The Slit Gong Drums of Vanuatu are depictions of ancestors, spirits and deities whose “mouths” function as the sound piece of the instrument. There are usually two drummers striking the sculpture with sticks at different intervals along the opening creating a multitude of sounds. These Slit Gong Drums are truly talking gods, with human features.
Bill Lowe – August, 2016