Been contemplating my life’s work this weekend and my made contribution to the arts. Here goes me looking at my life! . Thanks to so many who have enriched our lives! I was chosen to be in the Edit- A – Thon for Wikepedia around the globe ( interestingly i I was chosen in the United States) so this got me really contemplating my worldly contributions.
LIFE AND WORK
Award-winning painter and best-selling author, Della Burford’s art has been inspired by dreams, traveling to different countries , shamanism, and her imagination. She encourages thru her writing and stories to wake up and to take action to help the earth and also to be creative and make a difference in the World. Her work is for self- development, humanity and the world.
University of Alberta – Human Ecology – Clothing – Textiles – Bachelor of Science- Fine Arts options 1968
Queen University – Community Arts Program – 12 artists were chosen
From across Canada to be part of this Bachelor of Education program 1990
Della taught Interior Design at Humber College in Toronto for six years. 71-77
She designed a certificate Night Interior Design program and taught “Nature as Inspiration”, History of Furniture, Clothing and Design Elements and Principals.
After Della’s first book was published Journey to Dodoland in Los Angles in 1977 –
She toured with the book to Festival such as the World Symposium for Humanity where she as artist led workshops for children. It featured the planets leading scientists, performers, artists. She met Buckminister Fuller, Elizabeth Kubler Ross and Dr. Stevanne Auerbach.
In 1978 she did part time work an artist with the Inner City Angels and did an interdisciplinary program in narrative-inspired art with the Toronto schools which she did for seventeen years with thousands of children and teacher in their artist in the school program. She worked on themes of creativity and environmental awareness and also was awarded a dozen grants from the Ontario Art Council. One of her many favorites was the programs she did at the Wandering Spirit Survival School with Founders Vern Harper and Pauline Shirt.
In 1988 was invited to go to Sweden to a Globetree Environmental Conference and a group of children from Canada, Sweden, Africa and South America storytold her “Magical Earth Secrets” story in the Event at the Concert Hall in Stockholm.
At the same time in the 1980’s she was co-directing with Tedrian Chizik in New York a “Journey to Dodoland Production. She designed costumes and painted large painting for sets.
Della’s story with visual image projection or her paintings was performed in NEW YORK at:
Museo del Barrio, American Museum of Natural History, 3rd St. Music Settlement School, St. Peter’s Cathedral – Citycorp, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital, the American Indian Community House , and also in Washington at the Discovery Theatre at the Smithsonian Institute.
The Imaginations Unlimited also did a performance of Magical Earth Secrets which with Project Opportunidad went to all the schools in East Harlem in 1985.
A performance of Dodoland was at Easalen at Big Sur .
In 1982 Journey to Dodoland went to Gautemala to a “Magic in Me” Conference for teachers who worked with children with disabilities from South and Central America.
In 1987 Della facilitated a Children’s Writing workshop at the Cape Cod Writer Conference.
A Production of Della’s book Magical Earth Secrets was also done in Edmonton by Maria Formolo Dance. Della participated as part of her practicum for her Bachelor of Education in the Artist in Community Program. She facilitated many Writer in Residence programs in Edmonton also.
In 1996 Della did the start-up for children’s program for a Canadian English School Vancouver Language Centre in Guatelajara Mexico. She used many of her stories in the program which included using all the arts to learn English. Della mentored in Dance with Gloria Arroyo.
In 1997 she did many Storytellings in England and collected art for the Future Vessel in Sweden. With Diana Rhodes of the Seeds of Life Peace Foundation in Wales collected wishes for the world that were posted in Dodoland.
Della facilitated a special program around Miracle Galaxy in Holland with Marijke Sluitjer on Creating your own Healing story in 2004. In 2021, a children’s yoga teacher, Paul Vrenken created a video storytelling of Magical Earth Secrets. Della and Dale had been travelled around Europe finding beads to design necklaces decades earlier that they took to Amsterdam to sell. Loved Holland! What goes around comes around.
In 2001 Della and Dale went to Korea to the Festival of Island Cultures to represent Canada and she storytold “Magical Earth Secrets” & “Miracle Galaxy”.
In 2004 Dale and Della visited many megalith stone circles and also did a workshops
In Holland. Della’s facilitated ‘Creating your own Healing Story.”
In 2007 and 2009 Della facilitated Environmental workshops in Kyeonju and Gapyeong Korea and children made their own books.
Della and Dale went to Bali eight times 2009 – 2018 and each time she collaborated in sharing Storytelling, Improv and Dance with the I Made Sidia’s Paripurna Dance School. She also curated a show which her and Dale hosted at Karja Studios for “Art of Imagination” artists and a book was produced Imagination Reigns. In 2014 and 2016 she also had an art show of with Karja in the Karja Studio of her painting from the Dream Wheels book and “ Dream Gifts for the Planet Earth”.
Aaron Zerah asked Della if she could paint his book Spirit Stories – 3 Spiritual Stories. The digital version has been shared with 6000 children thru World Reader.
Della storytold at the Arthoff Gallery in Austria in 2012 when studying a renaissance painting technique ( mishe) for painting her dreams in Vienna.
An Educator and artist Kazuko Asaba from Japan found Magical Earth Secret just after publication in 1990 and started to use it in her art School. In 2011 after the Big Earthquake she was concerned on what to do and told the story at a Conference in Tokyo. A clothing Designer/Producer Ruu Ruu decided to work with her and produce a play. They performed the play each year 3 times for seven year including being at the Kanazawakbunko Festival In 2018 Della and Dale attended this Festival in Japan. Ruu Ruu in 2019 and on May 9th 2021 will do a sponsored by the Japan Cultural Agency performance of Miracle Galaxy.
P.I.A. Award for best Graphic Art for Journey to Dodoland
Painting “Shaman’s Eye’ – Best Graphic Art in Visionary Art Show in Moscow 2018
Swiftsure chose Journey to Dodoland to be the story to launch their project in 1995
to teach the internet to artists, writers, publishers.. it became Dodoland Online – Dodoland in Cyberspace Which since 1995 is a free ezine and has 600 pages and has had 2 million hits. Della and Dale maintain it as “an act of love”. http://www.dodoland.com
Della worked with Paul Showalter in the Design/Storyboarding of Dodoland. It won a P.I.A. Award for Graphic art. She also worked with Paul George on the storyboards for Magical Earth Secrets. After she was able to co-design and storyboard the book listed below. She was assisted by Dale Bertrand.
· Journey to Dodoland’ Los Angeles 1977 Printers Institute of America award Reference 2 In Review : Canadian Books for Young People
· ’Magical Earth Secrets’ 1990 Western Canada Wilderness Committee best seller Canada foreword David Suzuki ISBN 1-895123-01-1
· ‘Environmental Activity Guide Teacher and Home Study Guide – Art in Action – Nature as inspiration. Azatlan Publishing 1992 ISBN 1-895123-01-1
· ‘Dodoland Adventures’ 2009 ISBN 978-1-4196-7172-2
Journey to a Lotus – poems and painting done in India ISBN 978-096956119
· ’Miracle Galaxy’ 2009 Eight angels guide one into health and happiness ISBN 978-0-9695611-5-6
· Bali feeds the Soul is a book that started with a poem by author/artist Della Burford written when at the Spirit of Writing event in Bali. Photographer – Fabrizio Belardetti & some of Dale Bertrand’s too. ISBN ……
Bali feeds our Dreams – Dreams lived, shared and created ISBN 978-1-927825-05-1
· Spirit Storybooks – 3 traditional tales from around the world written by Aaron Zerah art – Della Burford ISBN 978-0992055349
Imagination Reigns – featuring artists from the Society of Art for Imagination ISBN 978-1927825044
Art for One World – Inspiration and Art Activities to make a difference! Featuring the work of Della Burford, Dale Bertrand and Kazuko Asaba ISBN 978-1-927825-07-5
Richard Pochinko: Clown thru Mask “A brief history and the evolution of the work, lessons, and photos.” Della – book design Della’s Student Clown Diary ISBN 978-1-927825-06-8
· Dream Gifts for the Planet Earth – the sacred white animals teach us about our connection to the elements ISBN 978-1927825143
· Star Galaxy for the World “Take kindness, peace, intuitive, wonder, dream, transformative, and creative action for the World ISBN 978-927825
Earth Action – Ideas to show we love the earth and take action . Featuring inventions and philosophy of Buckminster Fuller. ISBN 9781927825174
Desiree Burford – my mum was my creative inspiration and support
Dale Bertrand – my husband Dale has supported me in all projects and collaborated in many of them.
Buckminster Fuller – Della saw him speak in 1979 and as he spoke he turned into a white ball of light and his body disappeared.She realized it was possible to be connected to be cosmic and connected to Galactic energy.
Aroon Shivadasani – Indo American Arts Council – Aroon & Indur were hosts in India when Dale and Della visited in 1973. Della created “Journey to a Lotus.”
Robert Moss – https://mossdreams.com/ Dream teacher who Della studied with after publishing Dream Wheels. Della has done many Dream courses with him over a eight-year period.
Tenzin Wanghal Rinpoche – Dream teacher & Tibetan Spiritual leader at GlideWing.
Ernst Fuchs –Painter of fantasy realism using the mische technique
My twin Donna Yerxa supported my creative ideas and even helped do drawings for Miracle Galaxy when living in British Columbia.
Marijke Sluitjer–Educator from Holland who Della met in Sweden.
Pat Brennan – Sculptor and creative artist in Toronto.
Richard Pochinko – Clown Master who taught Baby Clown in Toronto.
Merian Soto – who danced and choreographed for Dodoland in New York.
I Made Sidia – who collaborated on dances of Dodoland and Magical Earth in Bali.
Wayan Karja – collaborated in Art Shows of Dream Wheels, Dream Gifts, Workshops
Kazuko Asaba – who created many art projects around Della’s books in Japan and co-produced “Magical Rainbow” – Magical Earth Secrets.
Julie Lyon Lieberman – Musical Director of Dodoland in New York.
David Walsh Always supported Della’s work. He has made major commitments to Community.
Vern Harper – Della did many projects at the Wander Spirit Survival School.
Pauline Shirt – Co- Founder at Wandering Spirit in Toronto. Cultural Keeper.
Aaron Zerah – collaborated in the Spirit Storybooks in British Columbia.
– Paul Vrenken created a video of Magical Earth Secrets in Holland. Marijke translation.
Thanks to Tom & Sal Williams family & the Burford family – Murray, Glen and Warren and sister Norah Burford – for organizing Bali workshops Thanks Glen Burford for media advise. Russell Coull for being there.
“You can be what you want to be”
“Each person can make a difference”
“Show you love the world and will take care of it”
‘All and you, you and all are one”
“You can self- heal yourself”
“You are connected to the cosmos”
“Honor your dreams and you will have more”
“You have inside a baby clown”
“Create your own myth”
“Create a healing story”
“Every person has a book or two in them”
“Be collective and collaborative”
“Sacred animals can connect us to the elements and be allies”
‘Take action for the world”
Della Burford’s Youtube Channel is dellabirdhelmet
Della Burford’s “Create a Dream” Blog: https://www.dellaburfordartist.ca
Personal Art Page: http://www.dellaburford.com
Della speaking at the Visionary Art Award , the art conference with the personal and remote participation of speakers at the Moscow House of Artists
Many Dances- One Spirit Traveling the Ley lines –Many Dances/ One Spirit
Workshop at Sunnyview School with Della Burford https://dellaburfordartist.ca/2020/08/10/1983-della-burfords-workshop-at-sunnyview-school-we-can-make-body-energy-rainbows-in-2020/
Jeju Island – World Island Festival of Cultures– Featuring solidarity 27 Island Cultures and Nature http://www.dodoland.com/nb_e1.php
Dodoland by Della Burford at the Smithsonian Institute – https://dellaburfordartist.ca/2020/08/13/dodoland-story-by-della-burford-at-smithsonian-institute/
Visiting the Edward James Garden with Gloria Arroyo in Mexico
Follow your dream – Mexico https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tXZ4WUpSfLk
Art starts with Love, Imaginations and Dreams https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pMayhiITUBU
Magical Earth Secrets – the Dream in alive! – Japan https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWTHVFDHhdw
Bali Feeds the Soul
Bali Feeds our Dreams
Inspire a Miracle – Development of ‘Miracle Galaxy”- Healing Story
Korean Eco Picture Books at the Vision Centre https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwDgfBHqb40
White Lotuses and Smiling Faces in Kyeogju Korea – Young Authors
Della at Art of Imagination Show – Ottawa
In creating this reflection of projects over many year I want to give thanks so much to so many people. I send my thoughts of gratitude and love! Della