Aylmer wood carver leaves his mark on the Plateau
Transforming an existing tree into a visual masterpiece, Aylmer-based chainsaw artist Josh Dagg wowed Plateau residents last week with his latest totem pole scuplture at Parc du Shamal. Including four six-hour days of carving, another several days of painting and varnishing, the final product provided an approximately ten-foot high totem pole featuring a fox, a racoon, and an owl perched at the top. “I was determined to fit those three motifs in there one way or another,” Dagg said.
Dubbed as a stump carving, Dagg explained that the art involves sculpting a live tree while it’s rooted in the ground. For this one, he noted that Plateau councillor Maude Marquis-Bissonnette requested his services after being referred by Aylmer district councillor Audrey Bureau. On October 20, Gatineau’s municipal council approved to subsidize $3,500 for the project.
Very happy with how the piece turned out, Marquis-Bissonnette said it was a very exciting project for residents, giving them a great reason to appreciate local parks and artists. “It’s good for the soul,” Marquis-Bissonnette said, adding that she would be interested in supporting a similar project in another part of the district next summer.
Over more than 20 years of wood-carving experience, Dagg has done numerous projects for the city during his career. He explained that his opportunities with the city have largely manifested from building a positive relationship with local elected officials due to his esteemed reputation for what he does.
Well-represented on both sides of the Ottawa River, some of Dagg’s work – branded with the initials “JD” - is notably visible behind at Parc des Cèdres, behind the Aydelu baseball field, and adjacent to Eardley Elementary School.