By Haidee C. Pineda
(JUN. 10)—Lual, a fiery, glowing sculptural kiln created by University of the Philippines College of Fine Arts (UPCFA) professor and ceramicist Rita Gudiño, will represent the Philippines at the International Ceramics Festival (ICF) to be held in Aberystwyth, Wales, United Kingdom in July 2015.
Lual, which means birth, is a clay sculpture incorporating a kiln in the shape of a birthing woman. Gudiño created the kiln drawing inspiration from her experience in giving birth and its equivalence to the clay firing process.
Gudiño fired the kiln in a ceramic fiber furnace which she called “Kumot” or blanket in a public performance at the UPCFA grounds in 2012. In May 2015, she transformed Lual into a functioning kiln that gave birth to clay babies called “Sibol” or offspring during its performance firing.
Through this masterpiece, Gudiño gained international recognition and was invited by ICF to recreate Lual.
ICF is Europe’s premier ceramics event where over a thousand ceramicists and ceramic enthusiasts gather to meet and study the work of invited, distinguished potters and ceramicists from around the world.
Gudiño joins 16 internationally-renowned ceramicists in four ways: through the building and performance firing of Lual, through her lecture on Cross-Disciplinary Research Approach on Art and Design Development of Lual, her facilitation of the SIBOL Clay Baby-Making Workshop and exhibition of her current works.
Kiln Art is a new genre in the international field of Ceramic Arts and Design. In this kind of art form, the kiln is in the form of a sculpture and its firing a performance art.
Gudiño’s work marked a first in Philippine Ceramic Arts and Design History. Her noteworthy endeavors in formulating Philippine stoneware clay and developing a double-kiln design concept earned her an academic distinction and garnered for her the UP Centennial Professorial Chair Award and UP Artist Award for 2013.
Lual now serves as a community kiln at the UPCFA Ceramic Studio, where her students’ clay artworks are fired into ceramic forms.
For more information about her work and the upcoming ICF festival, visit
www.internationalceramicsfestival.org and Facebook pages: UPCFA-Ceramics-Studio
and rita.badilla-gudino. With reports from Agatha Patricia Sayurin, photos courtesy of Prof. Rita Gudiño