By Randi Somers
Artist Jo Going’s animal bone show has been drawing people to the ground floor gallery at the Pratt Museum all summer.
In her exhibit, Going explores the question of whether an animal’s spirit lives on in its bones after it dies.
She said she senses that, “bones carry the spirits of the animals, a lasting essence of presence; they are relics, holy and venerable.”
Going has incorporated bones from the taiga into her work. She said Paleolithic and Neolithic art — as well as Italian church reliquaries exalting bones of saints — inspired her to create “Reliquary.”
The exhibit invites visitors to connect with the spirit presence of animals and contemplate humans’ shared sacred impulse.”
Going said this installation began 29 years ago on the tundra of the Interior.
“I knelt beside a caribou skeleton, and a mighty wind blew through, carrying with it a scent of the soul of existence,” she explained. “I realized then that bones carry the spirit of the animals; a lasting essence of presence, that they are relics, holy and venerable. I became the Keeper of the Bones.”
It was from this, she said, that “Reliquary” was born.
Going said her hopes are that the installation “connects deeply enough with a universal energy that, in passing, you take with you the spirit presence of the animals.”
Going’s show will be on display at the Pratt through Sept. 21.
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