MA Fine Art – Chelsea College of Arts, 2021
Deborah's objective as a Black artist and political activist is to create work which is socially engaged, provokes radical dialogue or disturbs the status quo. The focus of their practice is mainly multimedia portraiture and expanded interpretations, including graphite pencil, charcoal, watercolour, acrylic, oil paints and photography.
Currently, Deborahs's portraits are based on original photographic images and sourced stills. Subjects are prominent Black political campaigners whom Deborah has worked with, friends and family and some well-known Black figures in popular culture. There are instances where drawings and paintings of people have been pegged to news stories that have captured the artists interests as a Black journalist.
My research and practice is informed by the history and positioning of black identity, racism, political activism, power and social structures, concepts of representation and the positioning of stereotypes within this landscape.
Through experimentation Deborah has the space to consider the work in the context of new possibilities like text, dialogues, typography, video production and book design. Concepts like psychogeography, the relationship between land and identity and the use of augmented reality technology will feature in future work as well as the idea of embodied cognition and investigation into the creative political encounter between artist and observer.
Awards and residencies:
I am currently a finalist in the Concord Art Prize 2021 competition. The winner will be revealed in September
I was shortlisted for the UAL Frank Bowling Scholarship in 2020 and I received an award from the Eaton Fund in 2015.
Tate Late Online Exhibition, Land, identity and the dispossessed, 2020
Arts Chaplaincy Projects online exhibition, Stations, 2021
H2oooohhh, UAL Chelsea Fine Art Three Words, 2021
IncuArts Gallery online exhibition, PERSIST, PERSEVERE, BE, 2021
Babylon Arts, I Matter, 2021
"I want to stimulate dialogue and conversations on difficult and contentious issues around inequality, discrimination and the nature of anti-Black racism. I wish to raise people’s consciousness and to commemorate and memorialise the work of Black activists who have sacrificed decades of their lives to the struggle... I hope that I can adequately depict the humanity and vulnerability of the subjects of my portraits."