STORES

 

Treasured Ceramics Lot, 2018

Once fired, clay become a hard, durable ceramic piece. Within the educational setting, students are encouraged to create works, but the aftermath of a semester’s worth of practice leaves behind pieces discarded due to a change of heart from the artist. Within the UC Berkeley Art Practice Ceramics department, the number of abandoned ceramic pieces has piled up over the years. Through Treasured Ceramics Lot, these handcrafted works of art previously deemed as garbage are given value through conversation, presentation, and other factors of perceived value.

Photograph by Stephanie Syjuco

Photograph by Stephanie Syjuco

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From Me Tuyo, 2018

From Me Tuyo is a facsimile of a sari sari store, a Filipino convenience store (to some degree). Within this version of a sari sari store (based off of a personal family one), the products sold are primarily commodities that were introduced or created during or after periods of colonialism and imperialism.

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Back At It. Again., 2018

An art store establishment is mimicked through Back At It. Again. The stand is stocked with materials and tools such as pastels, wooden ribs, paintbrushes, soap, and mortar and pestles formed out of ceramic material. Alongside the representations of art supplies are fake toys based off of collectable action figures. The presence of the toys are justified through many art establishments carrying non-utilitarian collectables as customers near the check-out and discount aisles.

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The American Dream, 2018

This project centered around a traveling stand that sold ceramic food replicas for the price of that exact cuisine in the area. The American Dream was rooted in the idea of selling fake food to represent the actual sugary, nutritionally awful, often-overpriced delicacies that can also be described as fake. The stand travelled from Berkeley to San Francisco to Davis over the course of a week, tailgating openings, popping up at events, and infiltrating ceramic conferences.

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Imperfect Product, 2017

 Transformed produce, once perfect and iconic, regress into their unpollinated, damaged, and rotten counterparts while their packaging stays the same. In order to remind produce consumers the importance of bee pollination, “fruit and vegetables” should be bought and then placed next to produce to constantly remind consumers the potential fate of food in the event of a total bee colony collapse. Along with the creation, the produce will be brought and advertised personally at CCACA by bringing the Imperfect Product box where I go in a performative act imitating the farming and selling work of the generations of   family before me.

The produce contained inside this box is made up of recycled material such as  sink waste glaze and sink waste clay. Due to the materials, the finished effects are often unpredictable. Controlled placement of the materials, ratios of the materials, and mixtures of known-effect glazes help produce the desired results of the once recognizable produce into their undesirable forms. The recycling of   materials also applies strong highlights towards the theme of sustainability.

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After the performance that have occurred at CCACA for three days, I would like to spotlight the themes from my many conversations brought up by the many convention goers, admirers, and fellow ceramic artists. By walking from exhibition to exhibition, Imperfect Product becomes noticed due to its constant activity. The signs familiarize themselves with people through their experiences at produce aisles and farmers markets, bringing with them ideas of the amount of work it takes to raise and harvest produce. Their molded, rotten image acts as a memento mori and reminds people of the finite time food has. The produce provokes thoughts of sustainability while the advertisement of the goods and performance ask questions about the quality of life for farmers and agricultural workers. It was not my original intent to make sustainability the most recognizable theme of the project; however, this variation in interpretation helps broaden the audiences for this project. In the end, the original idea behind the ceramics objects to serve as a reminder of something is still present. Although the reminder has changed, the objects still serve their purpose and I believe this project has fulfilled its duty.

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