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Artist Spotlight: Dellene Peralta

Artist Spotlight: Dellene Peralta

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I had the distinct pleasure of sitting down with the legendary OG in the art of flameworking, Dellene Peralta, delving into the story behind some of my favorite glass art being created today.

Dellene’s journey into the world of glass art began in 1996 when she stumbled upon the creation of a glass pipe. Intrigued and captivated, she realized her true passion lay in the magical world of borosilicate glass.

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Clinton Roman played a pivotal role as her first glass teacher, setting her on a path inspired by pioneers like Bob Snodgrass and countless other artists. Over time, her well of inspiration deepened, fueled not only by those who came before but by the continuous influx of emerging talents.

For Dellene, the most fulfilling aspect of working with glass is the freedom it provides for infinite ideas and forms. Beyond artistic expression, making glass pipes became a lifestyle, a rebellious journey challenging societal norms.

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Yet, like any artist, Dellene faces challenges. The ebb and flow of financial stability, the struggle to balance passion with the practicalities of life—these are the hurdles she navigates in her pursuit of art.

With 27 years of experience in blowing glass, Dellene’s work has traversed various styles. She sought to learn a little bit about everything, honing her skills to execute sculptures that evoke emotion and stature. Despite her vast experience, she acknowledges there is always more to learn.

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Dellene blowing glass at the Oregon Country Fair

The glass art field has seen significant changes throughout Dellene’s career, especially in the smoking market. The evolving landscape has affected the demand for glass pipes, yet she remains optimistic about niche markets and the enduring appeal of unique, handcrafted pieces.

Memorable experiences are woven into Dellene’s journey, with a turning point being her victory in the first big flame off in 2002. These moments, too many to count, have been a blessing in her glass career.

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A collaboration piece made by Dellene and the artist Aquarist

Looking ahead, Dellene sees progressions of change in the pipe-making world. While the demand for pipes may have shifted, she believes a niche market will persist, providing opportunities for artists to thrive.

Dellene’s artistic preferences are diverse—dichro, sculpture, pipes, and an eagerness to explore the uncharted. Her advice to aspiring artists is simple yet profound: do what you love, and success will follow.

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In the male-dominated world of glass art, Dellene acknowledges the challenges but celebrates the increasing presence of inspiring women in the industry. Although the environment has improved, there’s still room for growth, and she faces it with resilience and humor.

Talking with Dellene is always a pleasure, a sentiment echoed by her first teacher, Clinton Roman. Describing her as fierce, loving a challenge, and dedicated, he captures the essence of Dellene’s artistry.

In closing, Dellene is more than an artist; she’s a loving mother and a cherished friend. Her art pushes boundaries, and her dedication to the magical world of flameworking is truly inspiring. If you wish to support Dellene’s art, you can explore her creations on her Big Cartel, www.delleneperalta.bigcartel.com , follow her on Instagram, @delleneperalta or find her pieces in Heady Glass Shops.

Photo Credit: Windhome Photography

Follow online: windhomephotography.com or @windhome on IG

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