Many longtime residents will recall internationally reknowned carver Dudley Carter’s intricate ‘Celestial Intruder,’ which sat for many years on a vacant lot adjacent to his daughter’s home on Gower Point Road. Carter originally envisioned the project as an open-air carving studio, acting as an umbrella over his workspace.
At the time of its creation, in 1984-85, Carter was in his early 90’s and sharing a work studio on Marine Drive in Gibsons with granddaughter Anna Vaughan Hanson. The piece was too large for the studio, so Carter’s son-in-law offered the use of the vacant lot adjacent to their small house on Gower Point Road (across the street from the present-day Gibsons Public Market).
‘Celestial Intruder’ became a family project, as son Earl and the Hansons assisted Carter with the rough carving and placing the “feathers.”
At one point, Carter had hopes of the Celestial Intruder’s installation at Expo 86, acting as a giant wind vane at Canada Place. However, this idea did not come to fruition and the sculpture remained at the Gower Point Road site until it was bought by Landscape Architect Ruby Buick and installed at its present location at a private residence.
At the time of his death in 1991 at age 100, Carter was still working on commissions and “was a going concern with twenty years’ worth of work and wood piled up when he died” according to his family. His work was most recently celebrated as part of the Sechelt Arts Festival’s Origins exhibition.