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Guatemalan clay artist gives free lecture March 10

Guatemalan clay artist gives free lecture March 10

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Cruz Enrique Espana

Internationally acclaimed teacher and artist Cruz Enrique Espana gives a free public lecture at UW-Whitewater.

WHITEWATER — Internationally acclaimed folk artist Cruz Enrique Espana will give a free public lecture Tuesday, March 10, at UW-Whitewater.

The free lecture, which runs from 3:15 to 4:45 p.m., will be at the Greenhill Center of the Arts Ceramics Area, Room 1037, 950 W. Main St., Whitewater. It is open to the public.

Hailing from Antigua, Guatemala, Espana is the son of potter Jose Guillermo Espana, and the oldest of 10 children.

Cruz Enrique Espana worked in his father’s ceramic factory as a child, but his dreams of becoming an artist in his own right compelled him to open up his own factory to make unique sculptures.

In his community, clay was not considered an artistic medium, but his work sold and he was invited to appear in Mexico, Costa Rica, the U.S., Germany, Taiwan and Italy, where he exhibited and taught.

After over 60 years of working with clay, Espana remains prolific and internationally recognized.

First and foremost a teacher, Espana currently mentors 15 women from Fuego, Guatemala, a town devastated in June 2018 by the eruption of Volcan de Fuego.

Espana strives to enable the women to establish a ceramics cooperative so that they can replace what they have lost in the volcanic eruption.

The UW-W ARTSTUDIO 251 Ceramics I classes, along with the Ceramics Guild, ENACTUS, the College of Business, and the Department of Languages and Literature, are partnering in a community-based learning project with Espana, LaUnion Spanish School Entrepreneurship Program in Antigua and the 15 women from Fuego.

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