Ceramic group (20), 'Leaving Home', from the 'Solitary Pleasures' series, wheel thrown porcelain, made by Janet DeBoos, Brindabella Ranges, Australian Capital Territory, Australia, 2005
Canberra ceramicist, Janet DeBoos made this group of twenty porcelain vessels in 2005 as part of her 'Solitary Pleasures' series. Titled 'Leaving Home', the group includes a colander, teapot, tray, jugs, bowls, cups and saladiers (oil and vinegar bottles) to form a portable and essential collection of tableware for the person living alone. DeBoos describes the group as 'a travelling kit of endless potential pleasure for the person who is leaving home, whether they are doing that by choice or necessity' (exhibition pamphlet, 'On the Table', Planet, Sydney, 2005).
Since graduating from East Sydney Technical College in 1971, DeBoos' work has explored the act of sharing objects and the rituals that develop from their use. In this recent series however, she has examined the personal pleasure that comes from using items that are well-made and beautiful. She said of this: 'there are many times when the act of eating, idling over a cup of tea or taking breakfast on a splendid morning is a moment to savour. This indulgence of self, using beautiful objects and utensils can have an almost wicked sense of selfishness of the best kind'. In addition, the plain porcelain surfaces emphasise the repetition of the forms, making them objects for contemplation as well as for everyday use.
Janet DeBoos made this series, 'Leaving Home', in 2005 at her studio in the Brindabella Ranges, west of Canberra. She has been living and working there for the past thirty years. The pieces are made from wheel thrown Australian porcelain with a clear glaze, oxidation fired to 1300° C. They are designed to respond to the 'changing demography of Australian society', and the increasing number of people who live alone yet care for themselves by using objects that are well-made and beautiful (correspondence, DeBoos, Sep 2005).
Since graduating from East Sydney Technical College in 1971, DeBoos has developed a significant body of work that focuses on domestic themes. Her work appears in a number of Australian museums and galleries and has featured in many solo and group exhibitions. In 1998, DeBoos was appointed Head of the Ceramics Workshop at the Canberra School of Art (Australian National University) where she continues to teach. She has published three books on pottery: 'Glazes for Australian Potters', 1978; 'Handbook for Australian Potters', 1983; and 'More Glazes for Australian Potters', 1988.
Janet DeBoos made this group of vessels, titled 'Leaving Home', in 2005 for the exhibition, 'On the Table', at Planet Furniture, Sydney. The show brought together a range of tableware by notable Australian craftspeople. The Museum purchased the vessels with funds donated by the manager of Planet Furniture, Ross Longmuir.