‘Ink & Clay’ shines in its 44th iteration

“Ink & Clay” is an annual competition consisting of work that integrates ink and clay to construct a piece of art. The show first began in 1971. The exhibition is now open for its 44th iteration,  organized by curator Michele Cairella-Fillmore.

“Ink & Clay” is a national show and includes Cal Poly Pomona’s faculty and staff in the exhibit.

The exhibition, located in the W. Keith and Janet Kellogg University Art Gallery, opened Aug. 22 and will last through Nov. 12. 

This year’s jurors for the exhibit were Kimiko Miyoshi, the printmaking/ink juror, Susan Elizalde-Henson, the ceramics/clay juror and Juri Koll, the curatorial juror.

The exhibit had 386 entries submitted but only 119 were chosen to be displayed, making this year the largest selection in “Ink & Clay” history. 

Cal Poly Pomona and the University Art Gallery also offered $6,500 in cash awards to entries who made it into the exhibit.

Ann Phong, an art professor at CPP, had one of her pieces selected for the exhibit and received the University President’s Purchase Award. Her piece is titled “A Female Refugee’s Story.” This painting consists of a litho print with acrylic and is a tribute to her Vietnamese culture. 

“My art reflects the feelings and thoughts of the people who have experienced vicissitudes in life,” Phong wrote in her description of the piece.

“Ink & Clay” is back after taking a one-year break, displayed in the W. Keith and Janet Kellogg University Art Gallery. (Daniela Avila | The Poly Post)

All entries for this show were submitted for the first time ever through an online-only submissions platform called “CaFE.” The new digital system caused a year-long break for the “Ink & Clay” exhibition last year.

To submit entries, each artist must pay a $50 entry fee and their work must be original and created within the past three years. Any variation of “Ink & Clay” as a whole or a part of the work is acceptable.

The pieces range from eccentric and abstract to classic and traditional. Aside from bold colors and textures and utilizing different styles of art such as Impressionism and cubism, the most impressive part was reading and understanding the context of each piece. 

(Daniela Avila | The Poly Post)

Artists explored subjects such as individualism through walking away from society’s expectations, the known and the unknown, what we can and cannot control, desensitizing the concept of death and encouraging the world to coexist with life as one. 

Alexis Kaminsky’s piece, “Ice Flow,” consists of ceramic, MDF, hardware, casein and spray paint. It is a series of fragments in different shades of blue pieced together representing the search for coherence and meaning in life. 

Overall, the exhibit is one worth attending. This esteemed competition is at such a convenient location for CPP faculty and students and a great opportunity to explore the creativity of these artists with free entry.

The gallery is open Monday and Tuesday from 4 to 8 p.m. and Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m.

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