In the next in our series of interviews with our COLLECT artists, Christabel Birbeck tells us about showing at COLLECT, Abstract Expressionism, and her new work for 2015…

Can you tell us about the work you are making for COLLECT?

For COLLECT I am showing clay and wood sculptures.  My ceramic work is presented on a wooden base and my new sculptures for COLLECT are mounted on small library steps.

What is the main inspiration for the work?

The inspiration for my work stems from my love of Abstract Expressionist painting.  I am particularly devoted to the group of artists working in NY during the 50s: notably Motherwell, De Kooning and Diebenkorn.  My sculptures are my way of presenting abstract expressionist painting in a three dimensional form.

Have you shown at COLLECT before?

I have, and I am delighted to be asked to return to COLLECT at the Saatchi with the Cynthia Corbett Gallery because it is such a wonderful exhibition of the decorative arts, and it’s a fabulous setting for large work.

What is it about showing at COLLECT this year that most excites you?

Showing at COLLECT is the highlight of my year.

What other projects are you working on?

I am starting a project of making ceramic box structures that are personified.  A pair of boxes are seated together on a small bench.  The painted surfaces are exposing the story of their experiences some hidden and others openly exposed.

The Cynthia Corbett Gallery is showing a curated selection of new ceramic works by artists who featured in the inaugural 2014 Young Masters Maylis Grand Ceramics Prize, including overall winner Matt Smith, highly commended artists Jongjin Park and Zemer Peled, shortlisted artists Jo Taylor, Kevin Callaghan and Christabel Birbeck, and Guest Artist Chris Antemann.

COLLECT is the International Art Fair for Contemporary Objects, featuring 35 International Galleries showing world-class, museum-quality contemporary craft.  The Fair takes place at the Saatchi Gallery, London, from 8 – 11 May.