MFA 2022 Artists MFA 2022 Artists: Kelly Devitt

Kelly Devitt process
MFA 2022 Artists MFA 2022 Artists: Kelly Devitt
Kelly Devitt

UMass Dartmouth 2022 MFA Thesis Exhibition

About Kelly Devitt

Kelly Devitt is a ceramic artist who primarily creates sculptures depicting emotions physically expressed through the human body. Born in Iowa, she received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Integrated Studio Arts from Iowa State University in 2017. Shortly after, Kelly continued to work as a Ceramic Research Assistant for the Department of Art and Visual Culture as well as the Computation + Construction Lab at Iowa State University. In 2019, Kelly moved to New Bedford, Massachusetts to continue her education pursuing her Masters of Fine Arts in Ceramics. It is Kelly’s goal to work in education and participate in residencies around the Midwest region of the U.S.


Anxiety morphs into many forms in the daily lives of our human bodies. As society progresses and technology grows, apprehension lurks. My goal as an artist is to start a larger conversation about mental health and put a visualization to how humans unintentionally communicate true feelings.

Emotion is often shown through the disruptions that take place on the surface of the body. When we are scared, the hair on the back of our neck rises and goosebumps begin to form. When we are embarrassed, the blood rushes to the face and we grow hot to the touch. As humans, we try our hardest to contain these emotions so that we do not stick out, but our skin shows those around what we are not willing to share.

I create ceramic sculpture that imitates skin, but as a whole, holds an ambiguous yet familiar shape. These pieces have individual personalities that reflect on moments of human emotions and how our bodies react in those overwhelming instants. My sculptures capture the moment when we as people feel most vulnerable, much like putting our nakedness on display.