When I first met Bevan van Druten from Exhibit Art, I was immediately captivated by his infectious energy. When he starts waxing lyrical about his passion for his craft, his eyes light up and he becomes delightfully animated. This passion permeates through each and every one of his unique driftwood creations.
Before he even started creating sculptures from driftwood, he had a penchant for collecting it. Then one day he came across the portfolio of a driftwood artist from abroad and in that instant he knew that it was what he wanted to do with his life. He closed the chapter to his vocation as a chef in the hotel industry and has never looked back.
"My passion for nature is what inspires and drives me to create", Bevan says, “and it’s amazing what you can do with nature’s leftovers”. He combines his love of the natural world and art to create unique sculptures from an assorted assemblage of driftwood that has washed up on the beaches of the Garden Route. He breathes new life into these weathered pieces of wood; the miscellaneous remains of countless different trees which have drifted on our ocean’s currents to eventually be deposited by the tides. Big and small, each collected piece finds its perfect niche in one of his sculptures.
He started off his artistic career by creating a variety of birds such as Blue Cranes, pelicans, eagles and herons, for which he became well known. Recently, he was commissioned by Bird Life SA to make an over-sized Flufftail, one of the rarest birds in the world, as part of an awareness campaign to highlight this wetland bird’s threatened status.
He has since progressed to create a diverse range of other African animals he feels drawn to, such as life-sized impala, kudu, rhino and giraffe. He has the talented knack for capturing the true essence of the animals that he creates. One senses an acute awareness of the muscles, tendons, stance and general characteristics of each animal.
Bevan has successfully exhibited his work throughout South Africa and his pieces have been shipped to clients all over South Africa and abroad.
His art can be viewed every Saturday at the Mosaic Market in Sedgefield or with a visit to his studio just outside of Sedgefield by appointment only. 044 882 1017