My work is an homage to my birth heritage and experiences as an international adoptee. I was adopted from China by my Mexican mother and grew up in predominately white communities. Inspired by Ming-dynasty porcelain, I have created a dinner set that represents the experiences of disconnect adoptees can feel from their birth culture. It also speaks to the bigger issues of assimilation and immigration. Each piece in the set is unique and hand crafted from porcelain with care, combining traditional techniques with contemporary elements. The Chinese dragon motif unifies each of the pieces into a whole and is a representation of the year I was born. Each work incorporates questions or phrases that strangers and friends have asked me as well. Food has significant cultural influence and importance. It is almost always shared and is a way to connect with your cultural identity and engage in cultural exchange. As it is a dinner set, it has been created with the intent of inviting people to sit down and engage with them. I believe that art has the power to create connections and foster understanding, and I hope that this dinner set can serve as a conversation starter and spark dialogue.
Jennifer is a double major in Communication Sciences and Disorders and Studio Art, emphasizing in Ceramics/Sculpture. Art has always been a major part of her life and while her artistic journey started with music and dancing, she is constantly exploring new mediums to creatively express herself. She was first introduced to ceramics in high school but started to pursue it more seriously in her junior year of college. Her most recent work focuses on sharing her experiences as an international adoptee and sparking dialogue on topics including assimilation, immigration, and identity. After graduation, Jennifer plans on continuing her education by earning a master’s in Speech Language Pathology while still pursuing art in her free time.