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In the Loop
Student Stories : Sep 24, 2015

City of Houston purchases work from ceramics student for display at George Bush Intercontinental Airport

Second year ceramics student Christina Carfora has just sold her first piece of work that will go into a public collection. For the past six years, she has been selling her work through the Asher Gallery at the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft (HCCC) as well as a few other galleries in Houston, Denver and some private commissions. This piece titled Invasion of a New Environment will be her introduction to the public through its display at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport. The HCCC and the Houston Arts Alliance worked together to make the acquisition possible.

Through her travels to twenty-three countries, a year and a half living in Indonesia and having spent time studying in the Czech Republic, France and Peru, Carfora uses social issues and experiences encountered on her international travels to provide the foundation for a visual narrative found in her work.

“I approach the issues through the eyes of a naive backpacker, brimming with questions and observations as I encounter a new environment,” says Carfora. “They are not issues I seek out but rather are issues I try and make sense of after I encounter them.”

Instead of answering questions, Carfora hopes to spark conversation.

“I attempt to document my travels and discoveries in an unbiased way, but the human influence always seeps in through the gaps,” she says. 

Carfora works both two- and three-dimensionally, and her “unnatural history” drawings are integrally tied to her figurative ceramics. Informed by the drawings, her figurative sculptures are life-size and encourage the viewer to walk in to the space become enveloped in a conversation in a different way.

“This sculpture depicts a tourist who is heavily laden with items that alter or enhance one’s vision,” she explains.  “When interacting with the figure, the reaction is more familiar and emotional.”

Carfora has had the opportunity to travel to some very remote places around the earth. 

“In our society, we easily become ensnared in our daily activities,” she says. “By sharing this unique insight, I hope the viewer will pause for a moment to think about the world around us.

With this in mind, I am delighted my tourist will take up permanent residence in an international airport!”