Artist Spotlight: Elina Jurado |

Artist Spotlight: Elina Jurado

Carbondale Clay Center resident Elina Jurado glazes some of her pieces on in her studio in April in preparation for her solo show, "New Work." Jurado will be a resident artist for one more year.
Jessica Cabe / Post Independent file |

Ceramic artist Elina Jurado just wrapped up her first year as a resident artist at the Carbondale Clay Center, and she decided to stay for a second.

Jurado grew up in Miami and graduated from the ceramics program at Kansas City Art Institute, where she was encouraged to apply for residencies and where she found information on the Carbondale Clay Center. In the last year, Jurado has had a solo exhibition at the Clay Center, taught kids’ and adult clay classes and taken a workshop at the Anderson Ranch Arts Center that has recently pushed her work in a new direction.

Jurado told the Post Independent how she became interested in clay, what she hopes to accomplish in the next year at the Clay Center and where she’ll go from there.

Post Independent: When did you first become interested in clay? Was it love at first sight, or did it take you a while to get into it?

Elina Jurado: It was love at first touch, really. I attended Dr. Michael M. Krop Senior High School in North Miami Beach, which had an arts magnet program. When I had originally applied to their program, I was primarily interested in painting and drawing. When I took my first clay class, I immediately changed my focus to ceramics.

PI: Tell me about how you ended up at the Clay Center last year.

EJ: The Undergraduate Ceramics program at the Kansas City Art Institute prepared me to continue my career in clay after graduation. One of the suggested paths to continue making is to apply to residency programs. I thought it was best for me to take some time away from academia, so I took a year off and applied to several different programs around the country. I was accepted to the residency here at the Carbondale Clay Center.

PI: What made you decide to stay in your residency for another year?

EJ: I have several ideas and projects that I want to accomplish in my studio and in the community that didn’t come to fruition last year. I want to leave the Clay Center contributing something to myself, but most importantly to the community.

PI: Tell me about the workshop you took at the Anderson Ranch recently.

EJ: It was fantastic! Being immersed in a place blooming with creativity and beauty inspired me again. I was going through a tough patch at the time and was rather discouraged from studio. I learned so much from my instructor, Gail Kendall; she encouraged me to explore form and surface in a more gestural way.

PI: How has that workshop affected your art? Tell me about this new style you’re working in.

EJ: I’m definitely incorporating the things I learned from the workshop into my studio. My forms are being taken out of the round, and the surface décor is less structured and more about color. I am allowing myself to have fun with each piece.

PI: You’re going to have a piece in the next show at the Clay Center — can you tell me what that’ll be and why you chose it for this particular show?

EJ: I chose to include a piece that I made during my workshop at the Ranch. It represents a new direction for my work and how my aesthetic will continue to grow from this one piece.

PI: Do you have any ideas about what you’d like to do after your second year is up at the Clay Center?

EJ: Not entirely sure; possibly apply to another residency or post baccalaureate program.

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