Deborah Crowe is a visual artist working in Auckland, Aotearoa New Zealand. Crowe’s practice involves building environments that explore architectural and spatial characteristics. The work often explores perceptions and illusions of space, systems of containing the body and/or structures of language.
Crowe’s practice acknowledges its origins in woven construction and strong interest in drawing, particularly collage. Her training as a weaver forms a conceptual framework and is embedded in the construction of imagery, fabrication of sculptural objects, installations and approach to research.
Over the past 30 years Crowe has exhibited in a variety of art and design contexts across and between disciplines. Exhibitions and projects have included textiles, works for the body, fashion design, object, drawing, digital print, photography, moving image, sculpture, sound and installation.
Crowe’s work is held in significant collections including Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand, The Dowse Art Museum, Aotearoa New Zealand, Glasgow School of Art, Scotland UK, James Wallace Charitable Arts Trust, Aotearoa New Zealand and private collections in the UK, USA, Canada, Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand.
Crowe completed her degree and postgraduate study at Glasgow School of Art in 1986, after which she relocated to Aotearoa New Zealand.
For a number of years Crowe has been collaborating with Eldon Booth (filmmaker) and Kim Fraser (fashion designer). Booth and Crowe’s collaborative approach involves a shared interest in repetitive systems, implied motion in space and the re-orientation of raw material. Current work continues an investigation into ‘aural architecture’.
The FRASER CROWE fashion label was exhibited internationally and won a number of New Zealand Fashion awards in the late 1990’s in high-end womenswear. FRASER CROWE’s catwalk work, characterised by its wearable yet sculptural forms, incorporated signature handwoven copper and nylon pieces and references to the designers’ respective cultural ties. The retail collections reflected an architectural approach to design, combining classic pieces with garments that integrated detachable or multi functional elements in their construction.
Designs are currently in progress for the re-launch of FRASER CROWE in 2017. The new FRASER CROWE collection is high-end luxurious womenswear, cut with minimal waste and utilising Crowe’s digitally printed fashion textiles in which architectural references and organic constructions converge.