Arts & Humanities

USU Hosts Paper & Clay Exhibition for Students Across U.S.

By Emma Lee |

The department of Art + Design, in collaboration with the Caine College of the Arts at Utah State University, is sponsoring its 7th annual national juried Paper and Clay exhibition for current undergraduate and graduate students. The exhibition will be on display in the Tippets & Eccles Galleries Feb. 5 through March 1, consisting of student works submitted from across the nation made with paper or clay.

USU Art + Design Department Head Kathy Puzey and USU Ceramics Lab Manager Todd Hayes initially selected the entries. Brooks Oliver, assistant professor in the Department of Studio Art at the University of North Texas and well-known ceramic artist, will do the final jury and award prizes for the top three entries.

The Paper and Clay exhibition was established to celebrate the natural affinity between ceramics and printmaking.

“Printmaking and ceramics share what you might call workshop mentality. We do things as a community,” said USU ceramics Professor John Neely, known for his worldwide influence on ceramic art with over 40 years of professional ceramics experience. “It takes more than one person to load and fire kilns and make clay and the same thing in printmaking where they have to team up in order to complete press runs.”

The exhibition was also created to allow students to participate in a national exhibition. This year, 26 universities are participating, with 62 extraordinary student works on display.

“It allows us to show what’s going on in contemporary ceramics and printmaking to the broader community,” Neely said. “It also advertises our program nationwide.”

The exhibition showcases a diverse range of artistic techniques and approaches.

“When people hear about a ceramics or pottery show, they think of mugs and jugs,” Neely said, “and they don’t realize that there’s much more breadth to it.”

All students involved in this exhibition from Utah State University are John Neely’s, who has been at Utah State University since 1984 when he came back to the United States after living in Japan for 10 years.

“When I came, there was already a well-established ceramics program, but I've been working to build it ever since,” Neely said.

When discussing the contributing factors behind the ceramics program’s success, John credits the students as the primary driving force.

“My standard answer to that is I know how to pick the best students,” Neely said.

Experience the remarkable student talent firsthand in the Tippets & Eccles Galleries, located on the second floor of the Chase Fine Arts Center, now until March 1. The exhibition is free and open to the public.


Emma Lee
Communications Specialist
Caine College of the Arts
(909) 670-3273


John Neely
Department of Art + Design


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