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Roberto Lugo: Hi-Def Archives

March 17–June 4, 2023

Vance Waddell and Mayerson Galleries (Galleries 124 and 125)

 

Roberto Lugo (Puerto Rican-American, b. 1981) draws from his lived experience and deep knowledge of ceramic history to create works that elevate the stories of those historically absent from the decoration of extravagant examples of pottery. Lugo’s multicultural mashups often combine classic forms and patterns with elements of hip-hop.

“As a potter,” Lugo explains, “I aim to carry on the ceramic tradition in a manner that honors the culture and community I come from.”

Lugo was raised in the Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia, an area marked by poverty, violence, and drug trafficking. At the age of 25, he enrolled in his first pottery class. Today, he leads the ceramic department at Temple University in Philadelphia, and his art resides in the collections of the most prestigious art institutions in the country, including the Cincinnati Art Museum. When he is not teaching or creating, Lugo returns to neighborhoods like Kensington with a potter’s wheel emblazoned with the words, “This machine kills hate.” Taking his art to the street, he uses clay and his wheel to teach others how to throw pots, break down cultural and social biases, and encourage the possibility that anyone can choose and achieve their dreams.

Roberto Lugo: Hi-Def Archives features recent works by Lugo and, for a limited time, the artist himself. For two weeks Lugo will work in residency at the museum, creating ceramics in a gallery adjacent to the display of his finished works. Lugo intends the exhibition to “be both an homage to the village that raised me up and the legacy of Rookwood Pottery.” Showing his work in conversation with selections from the museum’s Rookwood collection, Lugo examines intersections of community, place, and identity, celebrating the rich craft history of Cincinnati while simultaneously recontextualizing the impact of ceramics as contemporary cultural objects that honor all of us.

To request accessibility accommodations, please email [email protected] at least two weeks in advance.

 

Members Opening with NCECA Conference Guests

Thursday, March 16, 2023, 5–7 p.m.


Presenting Sponsor

 

FEG investment advisors

 

 

Additional support provided by

 

GBBN

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