Magic, wonder and spirit are the essential qualities of Gary's gem art. To truly appreciate Gary's work, one must understand his perception of the stones that he carves and designs into sculptures, pendants and talismans. To Gary, all Creation is alive, whether organic or inorganic, because it is permeated with Spirit, the Creator's essence. "I begin with an inherent respect for each stone as I receive it. I study its nature, its limitations. I try to cut as little from a stone as possible, very often removing only a few chips. Then I begin the slow and patient process of massaging its new form into being."
Gary's personal spiritual journey led him to Native America 25 years ago, shortly after beginning his carving career. Many inspiring relationships with Native people across the continent have followed, particularly with traditional elders and spirit guides. From the Six Nations Confederacy to the Lakota, Hopi, Dine and others, they have recognized and utilized Gary's art work. His gem carving and sculpting reflects his deep appreciation for the Indigenous peoples' spirit and life ways.
Birds of prey are another favorite subject for Gary. "Freedom is an essential aspect of my life as an artist. Dreams and life experiences with these great birds have helped to guide me on my personal flight to spiritual freedom." The power of these experiences can be seen in his exquisite bird carvings.
After creating more than a thousand carvings over 27 years, Gary's technique continues to evolve with each new piece. He has distinguished himself for his imaginative use of material and his vivid use of color.
Gary has shown at fine galleries on the west coast, and has recently exhibited work at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh, where Gary spent his youth, and the Los Angeles Museum of Natural History. His work is in the collections of numerous celebrities including Whoopi Goldberg, Larry Hagman, Bob Dylan, Max Gail, and Jill Ireland.
Gary Knack has passed on.