Roseline Delisle, 50; L.A.-Based Ceramic Artist Known for Her Geometric Design

From a Times Staff Writer

Roseline Delisle, a Los Angeles-based ceramic artist known for her elegant sculpture and strong geometric design, has died. She was 50.

Delisle died Wednesday morning at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica of ovarian cancer, said Frank Lloyd, a gallery owner in Santa Monica's Bergamot Station who represented Delisle.

With more than 20 solo exhibitions and numerous group shows to her credit, Delisle developed an international reputation. Her works are in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Tokyo National Museum of Modern Art.

Born in Rimouski, Quebec, Canada, Delisle studied art at the Institute of Applied Arts in Montreal. She also apprenticed with the noted porcelain artist Enid Sharon Legros.

She moved to Venice in Los Angeles in the late 1970s, and she developed a ceramic style that was distinctive for its perfectly crafted forms and geometric surface decorations.

Much of her early work was made in the medium of fired porcelain, but later she turned to earthenware clay to realize her ambitious figurative pieces.

Writing in the Los Angeles Times about an exhibition of her work, critic Kristine McKenna observed, "As aesthetic forms, they're structured around a number of oppositions: profile versus surface; vertical thrust versus horizontal stripe; order versus whimsy; color versus form. Perhaps most important, what they do is take another opposition -- art versus craft -- and skewer it with wit and shocking grace."

On another occasion, McKenna wrote that Delisle's art looked aristocratic.

"Delisle's work has the delicacy, intricate detail and impeccable craftsmanship of a Faberge egg," she wrote. "Evocative of stylized harlequin figures that threaten to morph into spinning tops, the work is at once whimsical and austere, and it feels futuristic in an old-fashioned sense."

Delisle is survived by her husband, artist Bruce Cohen; a daughter, Lili Celeste; her mother, Jaqueline Guindon-Delisle; and two sisters and two brothers.

A memorial service is scheduled for 5 p.m. Sunday at Kehillat Israel Synagogue, 16019 Sunset Blvd., Pacific Palisades.

Instead of flowers, the family suggests that donations be made to the Concern Foundation, 8383 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 337, Beverly Hills, CA 90211.

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