Deborah Hull


Deborah Kamy Hull received a BFA from Kansas City Art Institute and MFA from Boston University School of Fine Arts. She has received grants and fellowships from distinguished organizations such as: Opportunity Fund, Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture and the City of Boston; Artists’ Fellowship, Inc., A.R.T. (Artists Resource Trust) Fund Grant; Massachusetts Cultural Council and Polaroid Foundation Support Grants for Artist–in–Residence at Do While Studio, Boston, MA; Change Inc.; National Endowment for the Arts, Painting Fellowship; The Artist’s Foundation Painting Fellowship, Massachusetts Council on the Arts and Humanities. Hull lives and works in the South End of Boston, where she has been experimenting with different forms and methods of image making. Over many years she has participated in several group exhibitions in New England, including at HallSpace.

Project Description

Art Supplies & Studio Practice Support for New Painting Series Inspired by Roman Mosaics

My paintings over the last five years are constructed of repetitive and layered shapes. This work is derived from the study of deteriorating and disintegrating surfaces and influenced by ancient mosaic patterns and embellishments that layer urban walls. My vocabulary is a collection of basic geometric shapes. I use hand-cut stencils to paint onto flat surfaces of paper, linen, canvas, fabrics, and distressed drop cloths. In some paintings I sew together fragments, uniting disparate fabrics. Some of the drop cloths are torn, wounded by time, and the ruptures are stitched with embroidery thread. These stitches sometimes replace the brush as they cross the painting’s surface. The finished paintings are unstretched and unanchored to a support, like painted tapestry.

In the fall of 2019, I spent twenty-one days at the American Academy in Rome researching mosaic and fresco patterns found in Roman art and architecture. Each day I worked on a single section of a twenty-one panel handscroll, painting from what I observed and often cutting new stencils and testing new patterns. The completed handscroll 21 Days @Villa Chiaraviglio housed the results of my research and is generating a new series of paintings. I will continue to build, expand, and apply these ideas; to challenge and play with the boundaries of the decorative; and investigate the interchange between mosaic motifs, painting, and tapestry.

If honored with this grant, I will fund this new series of work in progress, purchase necessary art supplies, ease the struggle of meeting the monthly costs for my live/work space and hire a photographer to document the completed work for exhibition and archival purposes. My goal is to have a one person show of this body of work in 2022.