Letchworth, UK

3rd - 28th August 2015

 

Joondalup, Western Australia

2nd - 14th November 2015

 

Wanneroo, Western Australia

18th November, 2015 -

13th January, 2016

In 1915, in Georgian England, Alfred John Bamford was creating pictures for an exhibition.  One hundred years later, and half a world away in Western Australia, his great-grandson Michael John Bamford is also preparing for an exhibition.  The Artful Gene is the ultimate retrospective and progressive project.

 

Michael’s wife Mandy recalls their first trip to England.  Michael’s aunt handed him his great-grandfather’s weathered old sketchbooks, saying, “You’re the artist in the family; you should have these”.  Mandy remembers, “We opened the books and inside were drawings of A.J.B’s travels and the animals that he encountered”.  It was uncanny; the style was identical to Michael’s, and yet they had never met, and Michael had never seen his work.  He had  begun to paint and had his first exhibition by the time he saw Alfred’s sketchbooks.  Perhaps artistic talent is ‘in the genes’.

 

The Artful Gene project is a joint exhibition of two artists and naturalists, working a century apart, in two continents. Alfred lived in Letchworth, UK, the world’s first ‘garden city'. Michael lives in Joondalup, Western Australia, a ‘biodiverse’ city. The parallels are fascinating.

 

The exhibition includes works by both artists, sketchbooks, and published books to examine the artists’ process and motivations.  It explores the historical context and the role of art in communicating biodiversity values.  

Butterflies - A. J. Bamford

Butterflies - A. J. Bamford

Carnaby's Cockatoos - M. J. Bamford

Carnaby's Cockatoos - M. J. Bamford

Cassowary - M. J. Bamford

Cassowary - M. J. Bamford

Katydid - M. J. Bamford

Katydid - M. J. Bamford

© 2015 by Joshua Bamford.