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Ceramics & Glass (MA)

Elizabeth Degenszejn

Elizabeth Degenszejn is a London based ceramic artist.

Born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, she studied Economics and followed a successful career in business and marketing.

She began experimenting with ceramics after having a family, following a life-long desire to work with her hands. Her passion for ceramics developed at Greenwich House Pottery in New York, where she lived with her family for 10 years.

Elizabeth’s determination to pursue a career in ceramics was made possible after a move to London in 2013, where she took a two-year Diploma course at City Lit, graduating in 2019.

Her graduation work ‘Squares’ was shortlisted for Fresh and exhibited in the British Ceramics Biennial in Stoke-On-Trent in 2019.

Elizabeth’s practice is studio based. Her ambition is to expand her research of materials and exploration of form and movement once she graduates. She is interested in collaborations and in developing relationships with galleries in the UK and abroad.




Show Location: Battersea campus: Dyson & Woo Buildings, First floor

Elizabeth was drawn to clay because of its malleability. It is a medium that allows her to work instinctively and intuitively. Spontaneous gestures can easily mould wet clay into sculpture forms. She is fascinated by clay’s materiality, and its potential to be transformed into different states, textures, and colours to convey tension and conflict.

Specializing in hand building and slip casting, her subtle minimalist sculptures express a personal story, feelings and emotions formed in childhood.

She is drawn to the limits of edges and to how they can define a work’s meaning and aesthetic.

Her love of form informs a search for visual balance and refinement that gives the work a natural fluidity that conveys movement and transformation.

Currently, Elizabeth chooses to work with porcelain and Parian clay, for their elegance, purity of colour and natural sheen. She is committed to the quality of the finish, which can be seen through the smoothness of the surfaces she makes, and precision of her edges, both of which are polished and honed to perfection.


Release(Sizes variable from 21H x 9.5W x 7D for the tallest, to 11.5H x 8W x 5.5D for the smallest)
Release(each 12H x 12W x 7D cm)

Elizabeth’s work speaks of self-acceptance. It confronts and questions expectations of perfection and the liberating emotions of embracing who we are and our limitations.

Release draws upon her childhood trauma and the internal dilemma of wanting to be herself, but needing to submit to her parents’ expectations.

Pure white sculptures in Parian clay, distinguished by its satin sheen, reference notions of porcelain’s elegance and the confines of tradition it entails. By gently distorting a perfect geometrical shape Elizabeth transforms its rigid structure to allow an asymmetric aesthetic that conveys movement, fluidity, and change.

Elements of rigidity harmoniously coexist with the sensuality of curves and signs of rupture, in a balance between conformity and liberation.


Medium:

Parian clay, fine silver
Rigidity and Fluidity(each 17H x 17W x 13D cm)
Rigidity and Restrained(each 17H x 17W x 11D cm)
Stuck(12.5H x 17W x 12D cm)
Stuck(12.5H x 13W x 8D cm)

Elizabeth’s sculptural ceramic forms express the conflict between conformity and independence, by suggesting internal pressures that reveal the tensions created between the desire to individuate and the need to comply with what is expected of you.


Medium:

Parian Clay, fine silver, ceramic transfer
Fluidity(each 17H x 17W x 10D cm)
Fluidity(each 21H x 9.5W x 7D cm)

Elizabeth’s work illustrates this transformation, the constant ebb and flow of relinquishing control and breaking from rigidity to allow a more fluid and flexible identity.


Medium:

Parian clay, fine silver
Rupture(17H x 17W x 21D cm)
Rupture(17H x 10.5W x 5.5D cm)
Rupture (detail)
Rupture(detail)

This process of transformation culminates in a point of rupture – liberation – expressed by embracing the beauty of shattered edges and accentuating the stress cracks with fine silver.


Medium:

Parian clay, fine silver

MME