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The Institute of Ceramics and Alliance

April 28, 2018 - May 5, 2018

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. 

Event Calendar:

April 28th at 6-8 pm: Opening

April 28th 5-6 pm: “Hands in Clay” Community Activity 

May 3rd at 8-10 pm: Music by Sherry Valence

May 5th 1-5 pm: “Nuestra América” Poetry Reading Event

Anna Delgado is an interdisciplinary artist working with ceramics and projection to address ideas of belonging, migration, and displacement. Her work has been included in multiple publications and exhibited throughout the US and Europe. She has co-written grants and managed teams to create and install large ceramic tile public art murals. Anna was a Teaching Fellow at UNC Chapel Hill and graduated with an MFA in 2015. She currently teaches ceramic art at CSU San Bernardino and Chaffey College. Anna’s artwork examines multicultural identity through fragments of stereotypical and ritualized objects and actions. She rediscovers and reinterprets what it means to be an American and is interested in the recurring relevance of images, such as images of hands, like 40,000-year-old cave paintings of hand stencils and how similar they look to today’s emoji hands. Clay is a material with its own connotations, and as a geographic marker, it represents a place and is as nomadic as we are. Clay is one of the few materials used today in the same way as in ancient civilizations.

Brenda Starks was born and raised in Southern California and currently lives and works in Los Angeles. She received her BA from CSU San Bernardino and is an MFA candidate at CSU Los Angeles. Brenda creates large sculptural works, and although she is very enthusiastic about ceramics, her conceptual inclinations are such that no one medium will satisfy her work. Her sculptural works are created with undertones that probe slyly at African-American identity, pop culture, music, technology, politics and social activism. Brenda’s work has been displayed in galleries throughout California including at the Luckman Fine Arts Complex, and her ceramic works can be seen in Sam Maloof’s Permanent Collection. Brenda is interested in creating a place where people can share their different values or traditions with one another and reflect these ideas in that space. She is interested in creating images with raw clay because it becomes the landscape that it physically came from, and simultaneously it can be converted into a secondary and potentially completely different form.

May 3rd at 8pm: Music by Sherry Valence 

HRLA and The Institute of Ceramics and Alliance will host music by Sherry Valence.  Sherry Valence is an Indie Pop band formed in 2016. The band consists of vocalist Danielle Zamora, guitarist Ryan Massie, guitarist Jess Kelly, bassist Sean Kelly, and drummer Joseph Gallegos. Sherry Valence is a Los Angeles band and they released their first EP, Call Your Dogs, on January 27, 2018.

May 5th from 1-4pm: Nuestra América Poetry Reading

“Nuestra América” celebrates the unique voices and styles of writers and poets who live in Southern California. The title of the poetry reading refers to José Martí’s seminal essay, which was first published in 1891 in La Revista Ilustrada de Nueva York (New York) and then in El Partido Liberal (Mexico City). In his essay, Martí highlights the independent spirit of the people of the Americas. Please join us and experience the distinct performances of Tristan Douglas Acker, Alex Avila, Juan Delgado, Kelly Dortch, Allyson Jeffredo, Lilliana Gallegos, George Hammons, Timothy Hatch, Angela Peñaredondo, Daiana Rodriguez, Isabel Quintero, Micah Tasaka, and others. A variety of themes will be touched on, and since the reading is on Cinco De Mayo, some of the performers will speak to what they cherish and what they reclaim about nuestra América.


April 28, 2018
May 5, 2018
Event Category:


Human Resources LA
410 Cottage Home
Los Angeles, CA 90012