Steven Kennard started turning wood in England in the mid 1970’s. “Turning and carving have been an important part of my work since the mid ‘70s when I started working as a furniture maker and restorer.” He began turning boxes at the same time and immediately was drawn to the mystery inherent in them. “I constantly search for the perfect form, proportions and materials with which to create each piece. This makes the creative voyage one without an end, as each achievement draws me to the next. The encouraging aspect – the growth – means that I can look back at my earliest work from time to time, seeing in those designs the seeds of the present ones.”
Steven has worked in England, France, the USA and Canada and has been selected for numerous awards. His work has been featured in many publications including “New Masters of Woodturning” and “New Masters of the Wooden Box”, Fine Woodworking etc. The Art Bank of Nova Scotia has purchased his work for their permanent collection.
Steven has taught and demonstrated as a featured presenter in prestigious American Association of Woodturners symposiums in the USA and is an alumnus of the Center For Furniture Craftsmanship in Maine, where he frequently holds workshops on turning, surface decoration and box making for advanced turners. He tours the USA and Canada, demonstrating and holding workshops for guilds He teaches visiting turners from around the world in his own studio in Canning, Nova Scotia.
He is a founder member of the Google+ Create Program, created by Google for creative people.
“The wood turner artist’s path of experimentation and learning is one of continuous discovery. We develop and perfect our own skills and explore techniques and methods that work well for each of us. We find tools we like to work with and works we like to produce. We also gravitate towards specific materials that we find sympathetic in helping us each to achieve our goals in the different things we make. We grow into a unique and intensely personal relationship with our work. Because I work alone, as most artists do, certain introspective aspects of my voyage can only be communicated to another person through the medium of the work itself. It is a real inspiration to be able to watch the reactions and emotions evoked when someone sees a piece of my work. Whether the viewer is intrigued, is moved to laughter or to meditation, this gives me enormous satisfaction and the motivation to keep exploring and moving on.
“It’s my observation that our lives are being smothered with mediocrity and uniformity all wrapped in plastic easy care packages. In a subtle way we are all being conditioned to accept these inferior standards when it comes to quality and design. It is important for me to think that when I create something it might in some small way break that mould of dull predictability.”
Download the artist’s statement in pdf format here (2.33 MB)
The short video “Turns” (part of the award winning series “Conversations with Makers”) released in the Spring of 2015 describes Steven’s work and philosophy. It immediately gained international recognition, with viral success. It can be viewed here: