Strong visual and spiritual experiences link the development of my work to my place of birth and growth in Tapini, Papua New Guinea and then Alice Springs, Central Australia. I reflect on this early family life, translating these experiences and aesthetics into generous, textured and richly glazed forms. I use the bowl and platter form as they evoke associations and characteristics that embody familiar human concepts such as growth and nurturing, and domestic or ritual reminders.
The physicality and scale of my forms donates presence and sensuality redolent of human associations such as curves of waists or moving limbs as they sway, undulate or flange. Landscape acts as a façade that I can layer or dress the body of my forms in abstract or metaphoric ways. My palette consists of deep greens against whites – simulating the PNG Highlands with low cloud cover; textured browns, reds and grey blues suggest the Central Australian surface and sky.
Mark making or carved patterning is used to echo my experience with environment and materiality of indigenous cultures. For example from PNG I am reminded of the woven basket I lay in as a baby, grass skirts, shell and dog teeth necklaces, pig tusks, triangular patterning of huts and the denseness of the highland flora. Central Australia reminds me of man made interruptions alongside the spirituality of the landscape; eg. wire fences, train tracks and rusted metal next to gum trees, red sand, Spinifex, gaps, water holes and mountain ranges.
In my search for identity I play with the idea that nature and spirit are strongly connected and have influence over the other in understanding self. Childhood memories are precious making us who we are today and linking us to tomorrow.
Debra Boyd-Goggin, 2010