Dr. Graeme Chalmers

Dr. Graeme Chalmers is Professor Emeritus of Art Education at the University of British Columbia.   He was born, attended school, art school, teachers’ college, and began teaching in Auckland, Aotearoa/New Zealand.  A Fulbright Award enabled Graeme to earn graduate degrees (M.A. and Ph.D) in the United States, and he came to Canada in 1972, first to the Fine Arts Department at Concordia University Montreal, and then for 33 years at the Faculty of Education at UBC, retiring in 2008 and moving to Fergus.  

Graeme has authored four books – the best known is Celebrating Pluralism: Art, Education, and Cultural Diversity (Getty Museum) – as well as many journal articles, reports, and conference presentations. He has served as Senior Editor of the research journal Studies in Art Education and on several other editorial boards.  He is the recipient of awards from a number of institutions and professional associations. Graeme served as Principal Examiner in Visual Art with the International Baccalaureate Organization.  A book about his academic work: Art, Culture, and Pedagogy: Revisiting the Work of F. Graeme Chalmers edited by D. Garnet and A. Sinner (Brill/Sense) was published in 2019. 

Further information at  www.millieandgraeme.ca

"Since childhood I have enjoyed making things.  I was often in trouble for not returning my father’s tools to their assigned places.  After an academic and creative career I am now one of those older retired guys who makes birdhouses.  Like those men I find great satisfaction and enjoyment in making.  But, unlike others, I shun pattern books, and instead am attracted to parapets and gingerbread, festooned facades, and eclectic architectural charm.  I enjoy quirky old buildings and folk art.  I don’t make drab wooden boxes and realize that avid birders will likely find my brightly coloured work too fanciful.  In contrast my nesting boxes should be seen as folk art (although I do consider drainage, ventilation, and access for cleaning and have evidence that birds do indeed nest in my houses).   Although architectural style may not be meaningful to birds I hope that my obsession with decorative elements will result in a viewer’s amused smile, and a laugh or two about whimsical and playful use of recycled wood and the repurposing of bits and pieces from incomplete chess sets, checkers, Scrabble tiles, wooden candle holders, salt shakers, salad bowls, cotton reels, curtain rod finials, toy blocks, bits of discarded furniture, wooden wheels, etc."   Dr. Graeme Chalmers