Carlos Enrique Prado

Visions In Clay Invitational 


Artist Statement:

As an artist, I find the opportunity for creativity by juxtaposing recycled elements that have been used in art before. These elements can be identified as objects or motifs represented in works of art or even as some specific mode of representation itself. 

The human figure has been at the center of a vast number of my works, which, in some way, connects with my interest in an anthropological perspective. However, this interest is channeled through the action of recycling emblematic ways in which the human figure has been  represented in some periods of art history, focusing mainly on the ancient Greco-Roman heritage. Then, my exploration is centered about establishing a dialog between modes of representation created by humans more than about the representations of the figure itself. In some way, I try to challenge the western aesthetic paradigm using historical symbols of power  stripped of the original content. The original images created to stand on a pedestal now somehow become a pedestal themself in my work. Since I am a Cuban artist, the western culture still considers me as "the other", but at the same time, I see the western culture as "the other" as well. Thus, when I bring the western European legacy into my work, the feeling of not belonging and the lack of attachment allows me to re-use re-signified visual icons and paradigms in new contexts. Somehow, I can draw an analogy, for example, with the appropriation of African art by Cubist artists as a mere exotic visual language without any allusion to the original meanings. Moreover, with the recycling action, I establish a dialogue with my personal experience as an immigrant, a situation that causes one to constantly reinvent oneself and stand up over a pile of old versions of oneself. 

On the other hand, the anthropological connotations in my works sometimes emerge from more direct references to my personal experiences. Life's journey is full of unexpected episodes and situations, in which sometimes the feeling of being a pawn becomes overwhelming. Those episodes also find a way to be reflected in my works in a more forceful manner. Carlos Enrique Prado, 2021 


Carlos Enrique Prado is a visual artist and professor of art. He is originally from Havana, Cuba, where he received education and developed a career as a professional artist and art educator. Carlos was a professor of sculpture and ceramics at ISA, University of Art of Cuba until he moved to the United States in 2011. He currently lives and works in South Florida, and teaches ceramics at the University of Miami, where he holds the position of Senior Lecturer of Art. Carlos’ teaching is characterized by the ability to adequately communicate the technical and conceptual aspects of art, with an emphasis on ceramics and figurative sculpture. His teaching skills have helped him build a solid reputation in academia. 

Carlos's artworks are predominantly sculptures and ceramics, but he has also delved into drawing and digital art. His works have been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions at major art institutions, museums, and galleries in Cuba and the USA, as well as in other countries in the Americas and Europe. They are also part of important private and public collections. He has also presented his work as a visiting artist and guest speaker at various universities and art schools, including NCECA, the University of Southern California, Midwestern State University, Arizona State University, University of Mary Washington, and the University of Alabama. 

As part of his artistic production, Carlos has made several public artworks. Two of his major public sculptures are part of the Miami-Dade County Art in Public Places collection. His most recent large-scale public sculpture is located in the Town Hall Plaza, Medley, Florida. 

The Recycling Piles series displayed in the exhibition belongs to a wide sequence of works that I have created combining the column and the classic torsos. However, in this recent series, the sculptures have been built with the clay 3D printer and 3D modeling computer programs. In my previous works, the reference to a particular ancient sculpture was distorted by the process of making a copy in clay by hand. Now, the use of digital scans of the original pieces gives me the opportunity to play with precise references in a more direct way, so that the images still preserve their own voice within new re-compositions. Therefore, with the use of this technological process, I believe that I achieved a significant change in my role as an artist in relation to the production of the artwork. Now, more than a manual manufacturer, my work is defined as an assembler of recycled elements from the history of art. More broadly, I consider that art speaks through the bank of previously created images as well as ideas are formulated in our language through references to others previously formulated. Thus, the artist, as well as the author, are just one more tool or channel for artistic production. 

On the most personal level, this series of "piles" somehow speak about my personal experience as an immigrant, a situation that causes the constant reinvention of oneself and makes one stand on a pile of old versions of oneself. 



Discobolus - Column I (2020) 
Recycling Piles series 
Stoneware, Cone 6 Oxidation, Ceramic 3D printing 
21”h x 5”w x 5”d 


Neptune Battling an Octopus - Column I (2021) 
Recycling Piles series 
Stoneware, Cone 5 Oxidation, Ceramic 3D print 
19”h x 5”w x 5”d 


Gladiator - Double Column I (2021) 
Recycling Piles series 
Stoneware / Cone 6 Oxidation, Ceramic 3D print 
12”h x 5”w x 5”d 


Discobolus - Lump I (2021) 
Recycling Piles series 
Stoneware, Cone 6 Oxidation, Ceramic 3D print 
11”h x 9”w x 5”d  


Eurydice - Lump I (2021) 
Recycling Piles series 
Stoneware, Cone 6 Oxidation, Ceramic 3D print 
11”h x 7”w x 4”d