Candinos 2012

Casa Candina

A nonprofit cultural institution founded in 1980, Casa Candina has been a leader in the development of Puerto Rican contemporary ceramics, recognized today as one of the most vital artistic media in the national art scene. This institution, school, gallery and cultural center, has been instrumental in the teaching and promotion of ceramics, the development of creative talents, and an oasis of cultural exchange for artists, civic groups and the general public. Casa Candina closed its school/gallery in 1992. It continues to the present, its commitment to the promotion and development of contemporary ceramics.

The main objectives of Casa Candina are: The training of visual artists with a concentration in ceramics; a quest for work of quality; the investigation, documentation and diffusion of Puerto Rican and international contemporary ceramics from a historical perspective.

Casa Candina was founded by four ceramic artists with an interest in the teaching and promotion of ceramics. These well known artists, Susana Espinosa, Toni Hambleton, Bernardo Hogan and

Jaime Suárez have represented Puerto Rico in many international exhibitions where they have obtained several prizes. In 1992, they invited a young ceramic artist, trained at Casa Candina, Aileen Castañeda, to join them as a member of the Board of Directors, and in 2011 Miguel Angel Maravic, another young ceramic artists who shares the visions of Casa Candina, became the sixth member of the Board of Directors. The members of this Board of directors are active in other cultural institutions in Puerto Rico.

Casa Candina, offered one the most complete ceramic educational programs. Its aesthetic orientation, the technical knowledge of its teachers and the flexibility of its programs contributed to the formation of a new generation of ceramic artists which was evident in the participation of these artists in Premio Casa Candina: Biennial of Contemporary Puerto Rican Ceramics and other international exhibitions. As part of their educational program, Casa Candina offered conferences and workshops by well known national and international artists, historians and art critics to enhance the appreciation and education of ceramics.

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Images of the Exhibition Room at Casa Candina

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Galería Manos

Grupo Manos

A cooperative of ceramic artists that opened a gallery in 1976 at the Convention Center, in Condado, Puerto Rico, was the initiative of Estudio Caparra as a venture to take ceramics to a professional level. It included ceramic artists formed at Taller Bellos Oficios of the University of Puerto Rico, at the Art Students League of San Juan, Puerto Rico, and Estudio Caparra among others. Susana Espinosa, an established ceramic artist joined the collective. Grupo Manos, as it was known by the public and the media, achieved the acceptance of clay as a sculptural medium and participated with ceramic pieces as sculpture, in the Fine Arts

Competition of the Puerto Rican Institute of Culture. Grupo Manos also coordinated the participation of ceramic artist in international competitions.

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Images Grupo Manos

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Estudio Caparra

This studio/school in Villa Caparra, was founded by Maribel Toro de Suárez and Jaime Suárez, her son, in the 1970’s, as an initiative suggested by her former ceramic teacher Ginny Figueras. The studio became well known through the successful participation of their students in the annual ceramic competition of the Puerto Rican Artistic Ceramic Association, held at the Puerto Rican Institute of Culture.

Estudio Caparra organized exhibitions and in 1975 opened Galeria Estudio Caparra, a small space in San Juan that aspired to be a center of reference in the study and development of contemporary ceramics.