Functional ceramics, such as vases from makers like Dell who are engaged artistically with their practice, invite interesting questions relating to the aesthetic interface between maker and consumer. The latticework vase is complicated, highly practical and beautiful to look at. Advancing this historic form, Dell's virtuosity with a sometimes intractable material showcases her commitment, ideas and skill. Dell's practice also reflects the positive intergenerational influence that seminal individuals, Betty Woodman in particular, can have on an artist. She says of Woodman, "her work references many different cultures and yet it is completely contemporary. The work is audacious and brave. Her use of the wheel then altering and assembling parts has inspired the way I have made my work for the last 20 years."
Deborah Dell is currently living and working in New Zealand but is based in Colorado. She received her MA in Experiential Education with an emphasis in Ceramics in 1998 from the University of Colorado. Deborah has traveled extensively and lived in Japan and Portugal. While traveling one of her interests has been visiting gardens. These visits have inspired her work for many years. She has exhibited in Colorado and New York.
Objectspace acknowledges the support of the Unitec Department of Design & Visual Arts. Photography courtesy Karen Crisp.