Deborah Wace is a fabric designer, ecological activist, plant advocate and professional printmaker from Tasmania. Her highly detailed and intimate artwork creates a window into the botany of Tasmanian wild plant communities.
Deborah draws on a personal specimen collection gathered over 30 years to create rich, layered and complex botanical designs on fine fabric and wallpapers, and in limited edition fine art, using digital, dry point and monoprint techniques. A graduate from Canberra School of Arts (1988) with a Bachelor Degree of Visual Arts-Printmaking, she also teaches printmaking from her Hobart studio.
Advocating for Tasmania’s wild and endangered botany to protect threatened species and valuable ecological, historical and cultural environments is an important part of Deborah’s work. She was a key member of the community campaign to protect the north-east peninsula of Recherche Bay from logging in the early 2000s, using her artwork and song-writing skills to highlight its conservation values.
The French d’Entrecasteaux expedition documented this landscape in the 1790s, and gathered important first scientific collections. Deborah’s 2018 Churchill Fellowship took her to Europe to study the botanical records of this and other French expeditions to Tasmania. Aside from her Fellowship report, her experiences were captured in a short film, Fabric of Botany.
In 2021, the material she gathered inspired another short film, The Sartorial Naturalist. A multiform art collaboration with nationally and internationally recognised film makers, designers, musicians, costume and dance professionals, it is an autobiographical fantasy showcasing both her artistic practice and her latest designs, printed onto silk.
Deb Wace was feature on ABC TV's Gardening Australia on June 2022 where she talked about her highly detailed and intimate artwork which creates a window into the botany of Tasmanian's wild and often endangered plant communities: native orchids, rainforest, buttongrass and marine plants and more.
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