Claudette Dean - Bahamian Artist

Claudette Dean was born in 1954 and raised on the beautiful north shore of Lake Huron in Blind River, Ontario, Canada. In 1975, she obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in French Literature from the University of Windsor. She spent the summer of '75 continuing her studies at The University of Nice, France, and it was while studying there, that she first sensed an intuitive pull towards the visual arts—a direction which she was not yet ready to embark upon.

After living and working in Toronto, and then in Montreal, in 1979 Claudette left the shores of her native land and crossed the ocean to marry her fiancee, Donald, and make The Bahamas her new home. Settling into her new life, she worked as a French teacher, and in 1982 gave birth to her son, Donald Jr. She spent the next eleven years owning and operating two local successful businesses. At a time in her life when the status quo was no longer enough, and as a search for Self intensified, the visual arts came back into focus. She headed into the waters of creativity and soon found herself joyfully swept up in the flow.

Claudette totally devoted herself to her craft. Through focus, dedication, and consistent studio work—along with the mentorship of noted Bahamian artist and sculptor Antonius Roberts, and the support of family and friends—a successful career as an artist ensued.

Beginning in the early 1990s, her voyage has encompassed four solo exhibitions, countless group and juried shows on both national and international levels, an award for Excellence in the Realm of Fine Art from the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, and the pleasure of seeing her work in the most prestigious collections at home and abroad, including The National Collection of The Bahamas.

In 2005, Dr. Erica M. James, then Director of the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas wrote:

“Claudette Dean paints from the spirit, what she believes in that moment is true… for her, and artists like her, art can become a medium in and of itself. The process of art making can initiate a spiritual transformation on the part of the artist, and the potential also exists for this spirit to move in the viewer as they engage the work.”

Claudette Dean

The process of art making did indeed initiate spiritual transformation on the part of the artist—and Claudette considers the greatest measure of her success to be those who have expressed being moved by the transformational spirit of her work.

Beginning in the early 1990s, she navigated the waters of creativity primarily as a painter and mixed media artist. In 2010, acting upon an intuitive prompt, she wrote a series of poems to compliment a body of work for her second solo exhibition. The poems—love poems to the divine—and the paintings, are featured in a book named for this exhibition, Inner Sanctum.

Claudette subsequently broadened her sights to include the written and spoken word, and adjusted her compass accordingly.

The Circles of Life, a personal essay describing her spiritual awakening, was selected for publication in the 2012 edition of WomanSpeak—A Journal of Literature and Art by Caribbean Woman—a publication which from its 4th volume in 1999, has featured Claudette’s artwork, and has selected her paintings for the covers of the 2010 and 2014 editions.

She went on to write and perform Resurrection, a performance art video which was shown at the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas in their 6th National Exhibition, Kingdom Come.

The producer of the video, David Mackey of, described the video as Claudette’s Magnus Opus and wrote:

“Seeing Claudette's work, one can't help but conclude that she is spiritually connected to unwritten laws that foster harmonious coexistence free from the superficial veils of delusion that mask our true selves."

In 2016, Claudette joined a local writers group. A story she wrote in response to a prompt given at one of the meetings would, over the next two years, spill out into a full blown novel. In 2018, with the publication of Smelling Roses––A Tale of Connection and Transformation, Claudette became an author.

“Claudette Dean’s inspirational artistry now manifests itself in this intriguing book written in her unique style. A very plausible story, it is interspersed with intuited messages of Universal truth illuminating The Way. Smelling Roses is a beautiful thought-provoking work from a spiritually guided writer.” — Barbara R.H. Chester, founder of the Grand Bahama Labyrinth

In Claudette's own words,

“Embracing the unknown, I continue exploring and expressing from my place of connection as I follow the Golden Thread. Through the process, I discover my gifts, and through the work, I share them. And the journey continues.”

In the wake of Hurricane Dorian, Claudette works from her rebuilt home studio and office, and resides with husband, Donald Dean, on the island of Grand Bahama.


*For a comprehensive overview of Claudette’s career, please refer to her Curriculum Vitae.

Claudette Dean