In this interview, Bainbridge Island Museum of Art Chief Curator Greg Robinson has an illuminating and delightful conversation with Chris Maynard, a local artist whose medium is (legally sourced) bird feathers. His exhibition called “Featherfolio” is currently showing at the Art Museum. 

Chris’s first solo museum show has over 40 astounding artworks with feathers “carved” and artfully laid out in creative compositions. This show also includes four site-specific installations of birds – surgically formed from feathers – taking off on the walls in beautiful patterns.

Late in his life Chris Maynard became an increasingly recognized full-time artist, having first had a career as a biologist. But it was that career and his long-time interest in nature, especially the inspirations of wildlife, birds and their feathers, that eventually brought him to creating what is now very unique, unusual, and exquisite finely formed designs composed of feathers.

In response to Greg’s questions as Curator, Chris tells us why he became an artist and why feathers would naturally be his medium of choice. In this conversation, Chris talks about who and what inspires him, and how his artistry has developed and evolved, about his artist mother and eye-surgeon father who worked with small precision tools. In this podcast, learn how Chris designs his compositions and looks for feathers that will best express his design. Or sometimes Chris holds a feather and gains inspiration for a composition.

Chris’s beautifully written and photographed book, “Feathers: Form & Function“, describes “what feathers are; how they work; and why we find them alluring.” There is much to learn in this “Art Museum Encounter” with Chris about his Featherfolio exhibit, currently on exhibit at the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art.

Credits: BCB host: Channie Peters; BCB audio editor and social media publisher: Barry Peters.