In this short film, driftwood artist Sid Burnard discusses his strange bird and beast assemblages with writer Sam Llewellyn.
Filmed in his workshop, Sid talks about the origins of several of his sculptures and the thought processes behind his working methods.
(above) assorted items in Sid Burnard’s workshop; (below) the ‘Yellow Booted Dumbstruck’ (left) and ‘The Race’ (right)
Based in Borth, near Aberystwyth in Wales, Sid uses the flotsam and jetsam from the nearby sea as his only source of materials. With the unrelentingly powerful North Westerly currents and ragged stretches of coastline on his doorstep, all manner of strange materials make their way into his studio workshop: animal bones; salt-warped leather; rusted metal; and a plethora of driftwood pieces.
Sid Burnard with ‘Comb Over’ (left); a small parrot stands in front of Sid’s storage of painted wooden driftwood planks (right)
Sid works only with found objects, and he does not allow himself to change anything. He does not cut, carve, sand or reshape – each piece within his wonderful sculptures is simply introduced to one another. His sole method of alteration is the use of an old Wolf drill to enable the insertion of wires and rods between fixed bits of wood.
Sid’s passion, integrity and humour are truly infectious and it is a joy to see him when he delivers new work all the way from Cardigan Bay to the gallery in Uppingham. His work incorporates disparate scraps of refuse to make sculptural works of real character, whether a detailed harbour scene, a salty ship atop the waves, or an unusual species of bird yet to be discovered.
a driftwood whale chases two painted scrap boats in ‘Moby Dick’
After the huge success of Sid’s first show at the gallery back in 2012, he will be returning with a new driftwood aviary this coming May 2016. In addition to the exhibition, we will be launching our publication of Sid’s memoirs, a diary of recollections and tall tales from his Romany childhood to his current day life as a working artist.
(above) sneak preview of Sid’s new sculpture ‘Birdman’; (below) a triptych of new birds ready for the May 2016 exhibition
As a sneak preview, here are two unseen images of new work taken for use in the book, photographed on location around the stormy bays at Borth.