Under the Hands on Clay Program

Ceramic League of Miami 74th Juried Exhibition

In close collaboration with the Fine Art Ceramic Center, the annual juried exhibition for its members was open to the audience from Friday, February 9, through Wednesday, February 21, 2024, at the Museum of Contemporary Art of the Americas.

Curated by James Herring and Adler Guerrier

February 9th - 21th | 2024

In close collaboration with the Fine Art Ceramic Center, the annual juried exhibition for its members was open to the public from Friday, February 9, through Wednesday, February 21, 2024, at the Museum of Contemporary Art of the Americas. This year's exhibition featured works from forty members, in various formats and techniques. The show was juried by Kelly and Kyle Phelps, nationally recognized collaborating artists, twins, and art professors based in Ohio.

These artists commented that they considered it a privilege to serve as jurors for the 74th Miami Ceramic League Juried Exhibition. They thanked the President of the Miami Ceramic League, James Herring, and the many students with whom they shared an exciting and enriching workshop. They evaluated the images through an online platform and relied on their professional experiences working in the academic sector (universities). Furthermore, they reiterated that one of the things they enjoyed most in their careers as professors was the opportunity to analyze art created by both student artists and professional artists currently working in the contemporary art scene.

The opening was attended by a large audience, mostly made up of artists and ceramic art enthusiasts. Art lovers from the community were also present and continued to visit the exhibition over two weeks. The artists, for their part, enjoyed a warm evening where they had the opportunity to mingle with their peers and admire the pieces they had conceived over the last year.

Participants in this exhibition and competition included Rafael Alonso, Hanna Benciella, Angela Bayflower, Deb Burch, Anthony Campos, Céline de Paz, Rebecca Dinar, Lexi Dreybus, Nan Ernst, Noah Farid, Sara Ferrer, Finn Cameron Ferris, Zanze Fowler, Mateo Gandolfo, Anne Gorden-Vega, Jacki Hassine, James Herring, Kathleen Hudspeth, Carini Ingalsbe, Edith Landowne, Martha Prieto Larmier, Cookie Lethbridge, Julia Levay, Nick Levy, Marcia Manconi, Pamela Manresa, Ian McKenzie, Pamela Neumann, Puchi Noriega, Maite Oca, Vase, Katherine Palacios, Polo Ramírez, Linda Sands, Lorelei Serafim, Muchele Seuren, Tammy Shapiro, Ryan Shedd, Jennifer Villareal, David Vogel, and Yuki Yamamoto.

The Jury Prize winner of the contest was awarded to artist Apolinario 'Polo' Ramírez, a master ceramicist who practices an ancient Peruvian art form learned from his parents and grandparents. Polo is a direct descendant of the pre-Columbian Vicus and Tallan cultures and has dedicated his life to preserving their ancient traditions. Each of his unique pieces is made solely with his hands and feet, one rock, and one paddle. Polo uses these traditional techniques to create contemporary designs inspired by nature and elements of Peruvian folklore. He is among the first generation of Peruvian ceramicists to refine this art and popularize it globally through demonstrations, workshops, and exhibitions in the United States, France, Australia, and Central and South America.

"In selecting art for this exciting exhibition, we considered the formal, conceptual, and aesthetic qualities of the work. We also focused on the connections and importance of craftsmanship, the ability to transform space/volume, understanding of culture, and life experiences. We were completely pleased to jury such a wide variety of ceramic forms. The selected ceramic artworks ranged from hand-built abstract and figurative ceramic sculptures to wheel-thrown works (both functional and non-functional) with ultra-sophisticated glazes. We were completely humbled to see the level of dedication and skill presented by these lifelong learners...because, in our opinion, ceramics is a lifelong educational journey," commented Kelly and Kyle Phelps.

The Miami Ceramic League is a non-profit organization dedicated to ceramic arts education, committed to promoting education and appreciation of ceramic arts, and fostering the artist in everyone. CLM is a welcoming community of ceramic artists who share their work and passion for clay.

The Fine Art Ceramic Center was established in 2020 with the aim of creating an artistic project entirely based on ceramic art and has been dedicated to the promotion, innovation, and beauty of Ceramic Arts in general. It has set up a workshop equipped with all the necessary resources and tools to produce high-quality artwork on-site, in a space adjacent to the Museum of Contemporary Art of the Americas, in Kendall.

Kyle & Kelly Phelps - "The Twinz”

The biggest thing we would tell a ceramicist or any artist for that matter is to make art that matters!  Simple… make art that makes a connection to the people from where they are.”  Kyle and Kelly Phelps are a dynamic “twinz” duo whose incredible art is bringing the stories and experiences of blue-collar workers straight to the viewers in captivating ways that leave the eyes hungry for more.  Their pieces act as vibrant snapshots of life; whether showcasing the stories of working-class communities or using an artistic magnifying glass to scrutinize social issues, the twinz have mastered the ability to highlight both the struggles and triumphs of the people who inspire them.  Using every tool in their box, Kyle and Kelly weave intricate stories into pieces that command a room by evoking emotions, demand introspection and discourse, and highlight the incredible skill and talent with which they were created.  The brothers draw on their own experiences and memories from growing up in a blue-collar community and said, “It’s funny our inspiration was always right in front of us, and we didn’t realize it. Living in the middle of the rustbelt Midwest, we grew up in a blue-collar working-class community. Factories, foundries, warehouses, railyards were all around us. Our family, neighbors, community all worked in these plants.

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