Original Peoples Art
Geo “The Carver” McKay of Original People’s Art is a Nisgaa artistcarver with more than 45 years of experience. He developed an appreciation for north coast art as a child and soon began learning the art of carving under the guidance of his father, artist Patterson McKay. Over the years he was mentored and tutored by other notable First Nations artists and carvers, including Master Carver Henry Green. Geo’s years of experience and honing his skills have helped him to develop a very distinctive style. His work is sought after by collectors from BC as well as from other parts of the world and has been shown and sold in galleries throughout BC.
Original People’s Art is well known for original and custom work. Custom items available include artwork, masks, plaques and totems. Geo McKay has worked on numerous totems, the smallest less than one foot tall and the largest at forty feet high. Original People’s Art Studio is located in the basement of the George Little House and is open to the public Monday to Friday. Visitors will also find a selection of Original People’s Art souvenir coffee cups in the George Little House Gift Shop.
Meet Geo "The Carver" McKay
Meet Geo "The Carver" McKay
One of the things that Geo McKay loves most about being a wood carver is that "no matter where I go that I can pick up a piece of wood and make something out of it." He has been doing just that for almost as long as he can remember. His father, who was also an accomplished carver, began teaching Geo the art as a child. Later on he was influenced and mentored by other First Nations carvers who helped him to develop a deep appreciation for his heritage and culture. His works usually depict that culture and the influences of the natural and spiritual world around it and Geo is privileged to represent the Nisga'a Nation through his artwork.
His father taught him about the business side of being an artist too, like how to market his work to local merchants where he grew up. He was raised in Greenville, one of the four remaining Nisga'a villages along the Nass River. He also lived in Prince Rupert for a time and now resides in Terrace. Selling a piece always makes Geo feel honoured, knowing that he has created something that will be a part of a person's home and life for many years. His artwork is sought after now, and his pieces have found their way to places all over the world.
Geo loves to spend time in nature, the source of much of the inspiration for his various works. He appreciates that Terrace is surrounded by pristine mountains and rivers and home to great hunting and fishing. He also notes that Terrace and the north coast region is also a diverse region that is home to many skilled and talented artists, First Nations and otherwise, including many other proficient carvers.