Orbit: Dean Smith - Between Dawn and Dusk

24 November 2022—29 January 2023

Between Dawn and Dusk

I have lived in Central Victoria, and many other places across Australia and New Zealand, always within easy reach of a forest. I’m currently exploring the forests in the Latrobe Valley. With each visit my observations evolve, shift and fixate.

My latest focus has been on ‘bodies’ in the forest and the exchange/communications they have within the forest system through sounds, smell, stomata and space – squat bodied lyrebirds, tall tree bodies, mossy mounds of earth, pods and animal bodies. Psychological aspects of my visits also come into play – the effect of the dark and damp, quiet dewy dawns, a sudden flash of a deer, walking on a slippery log over a black stream, the reassuring glints of light through tree canopies.

In my Ceramic work I have tried to convey an exchange and curiosity between the ceramic body and the observer. These forms have been wheel-worked and hand built using coarse stoneware and porcelain combined with high-fire glazes and enamels.
– Dean Smith

Dean Smith
Dean Smith is a multidisciplinary artist, working mainly in ceramics using special effect high fire glazes combined with low fire enamels and precious metal lustres. Born in Brisbane, he lived in Australia for only three months before moving to Aotearoa-New Zealand, as Smith has Māori ancestry through his father. He now lives and works in the Latrobe Valley.

He has undertaken artist’s residencies in Taiwan, Denmark and Poland and has been a recipient of numerous notable awards including the Silver Prize at the Taiwan Ceramics Biennale 2012 and a recipient of a Career Development Grant from the Australia Council for the Arts in 2018.

Dean sources his inspiration from landscapes, mountains, trees, rivers, the seasons, electronic soundscapes, as well as his Māori ancestry - interweaving past and present, the imagined and the real. Dean extends his practice into photography and painting. Recent work includes themes involving fragile, impermanent environments.

Dean Smith is represented by Alcaston Gallery.

This is the eleventh exhibition in Castlemaine Art Museum's Orbit program; a series of exhibitions showcasing artists who live and work in Central Victoria which first commenced in December 2020.


Besen Family Foundation

Womindjika Woorineen willam bit
Willam Dja Dja Wurrung Balug
Wokuk mung gole-bo-turoi
talkoop mooroopook

Welcome to our homeland,
home of the Dja Dja Wurrung people
we offer you people good spirit.
Uncle Rick Nelson

The Jaara people of the Dja Dja Wurrung are the Custodians of the land and waters on which we live and work. We pay our respects to the Elders past, present and emerging. We extend these same sentiments to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander First Nations peoples.

Enter here