Joann Quiñones

Artist Statement

In my work I am drawn to objects associated with ideas of womanhood and the domestic as a way to explore the internal contradictions of a queer, Afro-Latinx identity. I use my background in ceramics and fibers to make figurative work, often large in scale, which represents visually a hybrid identity, both Latin American and U.S. born, Black and Puerto Rican, a daughter and a mother. In terms of process, I gravitate towards mold making as an expression of the desire to fill in the blanks of history. A mold creates a copy and an original. And ultimately, a casting is made when a liquid is poured into a cavity and left to harden. The result is an object that is solid on the surface and hollow on the inside, an apt metaphor for the impossible pursuit of charting identity. I use a combination of found molds, life casting, and sculpting to create works that ask the viewer to think about how narratives of the domestic, family, and womanhood are complicated by a history of slavery, stolen labor and skills, and consumption in the U.S. and Caribbean.

-- Joann Quiñones


Joann Quiñones works in ceramics and fibers to create large-scale figurative work. She was recently selected an Emerging Artist of 2020 by Ceramics Monthly, and is also a Manifest Gallery Annual Prize Finalist. Her work has been shown nationally, including in the 2020 NCECA Annual Exhibition, “The Burdens of History”. She has an MFA in Studio Art from Indiana University, Bloomington, and a Ph.D. in English from the University of Iowa. She currently teaches African American, Caribbean, and U.S. Literature at Earlham College in Richmond, IN.