A major emphasis in my graduate studies in ceramics at North Texas State University has been on the production of raku wall pieces. Raku appealed to me for its unusual metallic glaze effects and the accidental qualities of the glazes and clay bodies due to the smoking reduction that takes place after the piece is removed from the kiln. During this same period I was also interested in and experimenting with the use of electroforming as a method of jewelry making. Again, the accidental qualities of this process were appealing. It was during these experiments, especially those involving non-conductive surfaces, that i frist considered applying the process to large ceramic pieces. The stoneware pieces were limited in size since they were to be developed into pieces of jewelry.
Artist Statement from the MFA Exhibition: "My work about place attachment and the physical markers within the landscape that I consider home - Minnesota. I am interested in space and place and where those two things intersect. Using a limited color palette, metalsmithing and enameling techniques, texture, drawing, and photographs, I imbue my work with the memories of the landscape. My work is about experiencing space and is meant to bring pause -a moment of quiet and calm.."
Artist Statement from the MFA Exhibition: "Trappings is a huntress’ vanity room installation, exhibiting the duality of being feminine while utilizing masculine skills and traits. Keela Dee Dooley is a metalsmith from southwest Virginia, in the Appalachian Mountains where southern culture has gender expectations, stereotypes, and misconceptions. Working in what is considered a “man’s world” she challenges the expected role of a young woman by being skilled in a traditionally male dominated field, ferrous metalsmithing, and referencing the traditionally male dominated practice of hunting. Breaking the boundaries of industrial equipment and material, she creates elegant yet intimidating wearable sculptures out of steel on the CNC Plasma Cutter."
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