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The Institute of Ceramics and Alliance

Plastic clay, green ware clay, fired clay, glazware, projected videos, wood, vitrine, and water

This is a two-person interactive show that took place at Human Resources Los Angeles and was hosted by Kelman Duran. Using local clay that we dug up from Los Angeles County I created a sculpture that visitors disassembled to create their own sculptures and then set it in a vitrine filled with water. Over the course of the show the water broke down the plastic clay into a slip, merging the sculptures into a pool of that LA clay. I also created chalk made from that same clay and visitors drew on the walls. In the middle of the gallery sits a large sink that looks like two hands coming together. This was a washing station for people that used clay. On the back wall is an altar of hand sculptures that is an ongoing series since 2015. Upstairs two hologram-like projections face each other, sweeping the same clay that is piled directly beneath the projection; it is also locally scoured raw clay, this time unrefined. The figure dressed in yellow, is wearing my abuelita’s dress and huaraches from Mexico while the opposite figure is wearing modern day business casual office attire. The figures address complicated ideas about assimilation and placement, stressing current border issues and histories.  

Press Release:

Anna Delgado and Brenda Starks are Southern California ceramic artists whose art examines identity and place. Though their works differ formally, they have overlapping themes that explore heritage, transitional spaces, and the trajectory of clay as an art medium. Together, the artists have dug clay from Los Angeles county to use for their new show, “The Institute of Ceramics and Alliance.” Visitors will be invited to interact with the clay in different ways. On the day of the opening, Anna will host a community event where clay will be available for attendees to help make pieces that will be become part of the show, and Brenda will provide a contemplative space to allow a respite for people to sit with clay in its slip form. For the duration of the show, HRLA will have on display traditional and experimental pieces, projections, and clay in its fired form, raw form, and slip form. On May 3rd the artists will host a concert. At the closing on May 5th, the artists will host a poetry reading by writers “Nuestra América”.

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