"The whole thing is based on an act of hubris on my part," James Baird, Foundation Director, has said of the Foundation's beginning. "I co-signed a loan for a couple of guys. We were going to start a restaurant, and ended up with a building at the end of the Earth. And what do you do with a building at the end of the Earth? You start thinking what it's got going for it. And the major thing it's got is an incredible view. I thought artists would love the place."
Baird was right. In the late 1980s he was in Toronto where he saw a painting by Nancy Kembry entitled Still Life: Fragmentation. He was so haunted by it that he invited Nancy to visit Newfoundland; she appeared the following year with Marlowe, Milkweed and Ken (dog, cat and husband). Their immediate enthusiasm for the craggy coast of Pouch Cove prompted her to tell people about the place and it wasn't long before Baird's phone was ringing.