Stories told through ink and clay

Hailey Martinez
Staff Writer

The W. Keith and Janet Kellogg University Art Gallery at Cal Poly Pomona is hosting “Ink and Clay.” An annual exhibition and competition showcasing drawing, ceramic, installation and mixed media art, which uses ink and or clay, and also includes symbols, text and words in some way. 

All the artists showcased different interpretations of ink and clay. Each artist exhibited a different message with their art work, some which showed how art can be strongly understood without the need of having to be able to “read” a text. 

More than 30 pieces were included in all.

Among the works displayed is  “Window to the Sea,” by artist Andra Broekelschen, a multimedia oval sculpture made of steel and wood, embellished with colorful glass, seashells, antique doorknobs, silverware, mirror, tile and old hardware. 

 “A Marked Man,” by Jason McCormack, is a self-portrait, sculpted out of clay displaying words including “hunted, terrorized, outcast, silenced.”

“What inspired me to do this piece is my experience as a Black man in the United States,” McCormack said. 

“Systemic Racism,” by Mariona Barkus is a digital print on paper. Across the middle of the piece there was a printed quote by James Baldwin, an African American novelist and activist that said, “Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.”

Barkus said her series is meant to shine a light on contemporary social and political issues. 

“Being conscious in our society and hearing, knowing, what was going on – seeing the whole video of George Floyd’s death, inspired by the way people of all races came forward to protest about that,” Barkus said. “The focus was on not only the violence of the police but the system, the systemic racism in our society that people seem not to be aware of so much.” 

“Chaos in the bomb,” by Gina M. Fernandez, a craftsman style oak frame holding four ceramic tiles representing words from mass media. Words like, “impeach, lies, immigration, wall, DACA,” etc. are written in the cloud formed by an atomic bomb.

Fernandez said the disinformation campaign that ramped up in 2016 before the United States presidential election inspired her.

“There is no need for a bomb when the stock market is affected by a tweet and elections are won with bots and lies,” Fernandez said. 

Michele Cairella-Fillmore, curator of the gallery, said she was inspired by her student assistants and her role in museums and academic galleries. She really enjoys helping her students grow and preserve their work for generations to come. 

“The artist’s works contribute to make the world better and build a bright future,” Ciarella-Filmore said. 

The “Ink and Clay 45: The Art of Type” exhibit is free and will be open until Nov. 17.

The W. Keith and Janet Kellogg University Art Gallery in Cal Poly Pomona is closed Friday but open Monday and Tuesdays from 4 to 8 p.m., and Wednesdays through Sunday it is open from 12 to 4 p.m. 

Hailey Martinez can be reached at hailey.martinez@laverne.edu.

Hailey Martinez is a junior journalism major with a photography minor. She is a staff writer for the Campus Times and a staff photographer for the Campus Times and La Verne Magazine.

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