Murray Toews is a hard-working guy, devilishly modest about his talent making images. He is kind, and a good friend.  He has some invisible disabilities (oops) and something physical/biological that affects his eyebrows. We met when I was publisher of Rhubarb and he was,  first our Visual Arts Editor, then eventually conjuring images for our pages and our website. I started paying him to make images for me personally to use on my own website including caricatures based on existing artwork or an idea I had. Two came to me in dreams. The black dogs parachuting into my head “behind my eyes” ended up being used as a bio image on the last page of my book Love & Surgery, for which he made the cover image.  Graven, craven, irreverent images at their best. He is a key artist to unlock Pieces of my mind/My body in parts, which is coming alive as the multi-media Look show. I really like “Hubris.” It’s doctors with eye-heads looking at my bungled spine on an x-ray, and using a physical pointer to, well, point and show me. The caption reads. “Here is where the hubris is coming in.” I’m struggling on a dentist chair (I just saw one today, 2 fillings tomorrow, urgently) strapped into a straitjacket. I have spondylolisthesis, at the base of my spine, pointed out to me already in the 90s, but worse now. See how easy it is to digress my selves.

Today this is a LOOK show blog about a dog. A toy dog, say, as a stuffed wolfhound. …..take it away Murray.


Here’s the story by M.Toews, as told to victorennsnein (name dropping alert)

Guy Maddin (right up front, hey) was making a movie in Winnipeg (those were the days) at least some of the time about MY WINNIPEG. That’s the backstory.

Murray Toews was acquainted with Guy ( I was as well, but not the same time) Maddin. Murray was doing some unrecognized work on the show, AND had a stuffed wolfhound that was just taking up space and time in the temporal plane. A friend asked if he could have it in a free curbside take it away kind for free in inimitable Winnipeg style. For Now the fellow shall remain nameless because I don’t want to bother Murray who is working heads over tails on LOOK.

As it turned out the friend was working in props kinda sorta on the movie and Guy saw the stuffed wolfhound and was feeling that the stuffed wolfhound was just what was needed for that extra je ne sais quo for his Winnipeg movie. Murray isn’t sure what happened after STUFFY, the actual temporal fetish object, was shot. He did end up in the movie, became quite a star, while Murray went back to the drawing board and his own making stuff in the shadows with shadows Having been told the story I was curious if he had any pictures or impressions of the wolfhound I only know as Stuffy.

And there we/you go. STUFFY!






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