Born in 1992 in Bien Hoa, Vietnam, Dan immigrated to the United States in 2000. In 2010, he was awarded the Sterling Scholar; representing his High School in Visual Arts. Dan was accepted in the University of Utah with a Department of Art & Art History Scholarship where he is currently pursuing his BFA with an emphasis in Ceramics, with the expected graduation date of Spring 2014. In 2012 he was awarded the Fine Arts Advisory Board Scholarship and exhibited his works in various juried shows within Utah including: Arts of Our Century, William Fine Arts Annual Juried Show, The 5th Annual South Jordan Art Show, Rockwood Art Studios, and University of Utah Annual Student Exhibition. He was awarded the Award of Merit and Faculty Award at the University of Utah Annual Student Exhibition, Second Place at the 5th Annual South Jordan Art Show, and Second Place at the William Fine Arts 2012 Annual Juried Show.
Our ecosystem is made up of many parts that play a key role in ensuring that it works to maximum efficiency. When one part is broken or removed, the system can malfunction or fail altogether. Subtle or gradual changes in nature occur in response to these failures. When humans begin to manipulate nature, we create organisms that may seem “natural” to us, but are they real? Is it ethical to genetically modify traits and qualities that do not typically develop naturally? Is it how nature or our bodies are intended to exist?
In my work, I like to explore the idea of hybrid and natural mutations, using the form of the vessel or the body as a test subject. I construct elements in repetitive layers to give a sense of organic growth and movement to the ceramic objects I make. The attachments are inspired by the memories of my heritage and things I see in nature; growing up in an agricultural town in Vietnam, the landscape has always been my playground. The exploration of ideas around human manipulation of nature and our bodies, results in the new breeds that I have created.
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