The nose that lost its dog
A sinuous form rises upwards from a scrap of animal pelt. At its tip, a black dog’s nose protrudes from a fold in the fur, one nostril plugged with a small object of uncertain material. Five acupuncture needles extend from the nose like porcupine quills on a dog’s muzzle—the natural outcome of “sticking your nose where it doesn’t belong.” The wide black leather collar resembles those used to prevent dogs from licking their wounds.
Fur or wood or loofahs or leather or any of those porous materials seem to almost have a built-in cultural and historical memory, so they can mean something to a person immediately. Siobhán Hapaska
The fur is from a coyote, also known as a prairie wolf, an animal native to the Americas. It is an opportunistic scavenger, a rascal sniffing for scraps along the edges of what is accepted. How do you read the bodily orientation of the work, a hybrid of nose and tail? In this upended world, the instruction to “follow your nose,” to trust your instincts, is thwarted.
Lisa Martin, Exhibition Assistant for Siobhán Hapaska, September 2013