Yinka Orafidiya is a socially engaged ceramic artist based in Philadelphia, PA. She has exhibited at The Clay Gallery in Michigan, The Greene County Council on the Arts Gallery in New York, The Manchester Craftmen’s Guild in Pittsburgh, The Woodmere Art Museum, and at various other locations around the Philadelphia area. In 2018, Yinka completed an advanced pottery intensive with master potters in Ghana West Africa and she has also participated in residencies at the Moravian Pottery and Tile Works (Doylestown, PA), the International Ceramics Studio (Kecskemet, Hungary), and Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts (Newcastle, ME). Yinka has been awarded two grants from the Leeway Foundation, a Multicultural Fellowship from the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts, a Visual Arts Fellowship from the Independence Foundation, and a microgrant from Small But Mighty Arts and the Stockton Rush Bartol Foundation. She currently sustains her studio practice at The Allens Lane Art Center where she also teaches and works as the assistant studio technician.
My artwork is rooted in the desire to promote awareness of our shared humanity, connect, and effect social change. I believe that interacting with a handmade object inexplicably links you to the spirit of the artist. Conscious awareness of this connection can lend a surreal quality to touching a pot created hundreds of years ago, or thousands of miles away. But even at the unconscious level, this subtle connection has the ability to invoke sensations of warmth, clarity, sensuality, and wholeness. In a fractured world where loneliness and isolation run rampant, I find even a momentary sense of unity to be invaluable. And for me, providing such meaningful experiences for others is the most satisfying result that I hope to achieve with my work.