Master carver Hank Tyler is Wendell Gilley Museum’s featured artist for October for its People-Nature-Art series. Tyler, a Maine native, currently lives in Australia. PHOTO COURTESY OF WENDELL GILLEY MUSEUM

Master carver is Gilley’s featured artist for October

Master carver Hank Tyler’s “Patridge eating apples” is carved using the hardwoods walnut, rosewood and benge. Tyler is the Wendell Gilley Museum’s featured artist for People-Nature-Art for October.

SOUTHWEST HARBOR — Hank Tyler, a carver respected internationally for his depictions of birds in hardwoods and his work in environmental conservation, joins the Wendell Gilley Museum as the featured artist for People-Nature-Art in October on Tuesday, Oct. 5, at 7 p.m. via Zoom. 

Tyler’s work is in many private and museum collections, including the Gilley’s. His style is a blend of realism and slight abstraction, with the wood grain playing a major role in each sculpture’s design. Action, too, is always a part of his carvings, be it petrels soaring over ocean waves, sandpipers feeding on mudflats or owls alert for prey. He uses many different hardwoods in his work, always working from a single piece, hand carving with chisels and finishing only in Tung oil. 

A native of Brunswick, Tyler began carving in high school and says he developed a fondness for shorebirds and ocean birds growing up on the shores of Casco Bay. He now lives in Australia where he continues to carve. He also teaches at the Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking. 

His work has been exhibited widely, including at the Farnsworth Museum in Rockland and the Ogunquit Art Center, and has been accepted 14 times into the juried show “Birds in Art” at the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum. He has won many awards, including the Society of Animal Artists Award for Excellence. 

There is no charge to attend, but registration is required from the Gilley’s website at A recording of the event will be available only to museum members. 

People-Nature-Art is the Gilley’s signature monthly year-round series that brings artists, writers, carvers and creative types of all kinds to the museum to share how nature impacts their art and how that art affects their approach to the natural world.

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