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Deborah Dumka was born in Northern British Columbia and has lived three quarters of her life in rural communities across Canada, for the most part on the shores of an ocean. She draws on the physical and emotional landscape of rural life to make functional textile work examining our important connections with nature.
Her contemporary landscape-based textile works are created using the sustainable materials and ancient techniques of traditional wet felting. Her works celebrate natural materials and the process of transformation that leaves the mark of the hands on objects. They ask the viewer to examine the importance of our experiences in nature as they imprint marks, impressions and memories.
From a personal perspective, her works delve into universal themes of deep connections we have to nature, how our surroundings contribute to our sense of wellbeing and how we belong in the world. She is drawn to the intersections: of land and water, of physical and emotional experience, and of craft creation and scientific exploration.
Her interactive functional floor carpets integrate digital technology, conductive materials and components of wearable electronics to construct immersive interactive experiences of nature using image, texture and sound.
Deborah holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from MUN (1978) and a diploma from the Textile Studies Program of the Anna Templeton Centre (1994), St. John’s NL. She advocates for the Canadian Craft Community by serving on the board of the Craft Council of British Columbia and as a past president the Canadian Crafts Federation.
She works from her home studio on Texada Island in the Strait of Georgia.
Her work has been shown in solo and group shows in Canada and Korea.