ARTIST STATEMENT + BIO
Craftsman / designer
Douglas Bamford is a senior Canadian artist living in Lunenburg, NS. After 20 years as Ceramics Technician at NSCAD University, he now splits his time between a vibrant studio practice and volunteer Programs Director at the Lunenburg School of the Arts, of which he is a co-founder. He holds a BFA in Ceramics and a B. ED Art Education from NSCAD 1995, as well as a diploma from Sheridan School of Design, 1975. Bamford has a background as a ceramic artist, furniture designer/maker, builder, educator and public artist with numerous commissions across Canada, and ceramic works in many private and public collections.
I am by nature a collaborator and mentor; I base my public art practice in the belief that through collaborative participation a team can realize the emergence of larger, more diverse works than I can produce on my own. I also believe that sharing experience with younger artists is a responsibility of the senior artist. With this approach, complex works arise out of interactions and input with others holding a multiplicity of skills and insights.When I am developing Public Artworks, my process has been that of inviting, involving and listening to those who are stakeholders in the final work. It is my intent when creating community-based works that members of the community can feel a true sense of ownership in the final work of art.
My ceramic studio practice has been that of examining the history of ceramic art; investigating the socio, economic and political environments from which iconic styles and works emerged, then trying to make historically informed ceramic objects within a contemporary context. I believe very strongly that history has much to teach us. I am currently turning my inquiry closer to home and looking at the decoration and ornamentation of Lunenburg and surrounding Nova Scotia. I am investigating the various waves of European and African settlement in this region, their interactions with the Indigenous peoples, the use of African labour, the French English clashes, and questionable environmental behavior. These are but a few of the topics that intrigue me as I probe the rich history of “place” here in Lunenburg that I now call home.