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Painted City Artist Roster - Michelena Bamford

Artist Statement

Nature’s colours, textures, and evolution inspire my explorers soul. I want to discover and gather her discarded limbs, dropped feathers, bone and stone; revealing the frame of humanity found within. I collect her pieces within a throw-away culture, reclaiming and rearranging beauty to make her whole again.

Gathering people is not so different; each has their own bright light, colour, and texture; unique and often discarded too. Through the mosaic medium I can honour and collect their stories, constructing a truth through the abstraction of the salvaged materials. Guiding ancient techniques with modern materials within a collective community creates a beautiful meditation of one. 

We are all a permanent mosaic of light and shadow; I hope to allow the art of life to shine with the glow of our own earthly nature.

Photo Gallery - Unclassified

  • Betula
  • Bow
  • I of the Storm
  • Roots
  • The Water Spiral

Artist Bio

I am a self-taught artist whose creative passions developed along with my three sons in an inner city Calgary bungalow. Inspired by a wild childhood in rural Australia and two very talented Grandmothers, I believe true art is living and sharing a full and beautiful life.

Discovering mosaics in the late 90’s was life altering for me and I have been striving to elevate the dynamic medium in Canada ever since. My travel plans always include colourful mosaic destinations and mentorships that expand my expertise so I may continue to develop innovative curriculum and collaborative techniques that engage diverse demographics.

I am a community creator; opening Wolf Willow Studio in 2012 to hold space for my abundant passions and projects, which always include nature, art, and collaboration. Adept in many mediums, I love challenging my artistic experiences and this year I hope to add “published author” to my resume.

Community Engagement

"I know there is strength in the differences between us. I know there is comfort, where we overlap."— Ani DiFranco
My role as an artist working in community is to discover, acknowledge, and honour the diversity and uniqueness in each person, group, or demographic I work with. I also hope to expose the commonalities and essences of humanity that bind us. Achieving both through collaborative process drives my artistic purpose.

I welcome new opportunities and allow themes, imagery, and intentions to come directly from the client I am here to serve. I relish mediums and materials that have a unique story and significance, and relate to environmental sustainability. The mosaic form speaks most directly to my collaborative intentions; its techniques remarkable yet completely accessible. It’s very definition is a beautiful metaphor I hope to translate: To arrange individual pieces into one, unified, whole.
See the full artist roster and read more about the Painted City initiative.