Emily Boon ’23 Experiments Beyond Realism With Ceramics

Emily Boon ’23 crafts an eye-catching and colorful ceramics piece consisting of three heads arranged carefully in a wavy-rimmed bowl. One head sports a Medusa-esque crown of snakes as hair, while another wears a rose-like opening at the top of its skull. The expressions of the detailed clay faces give the piece a uniquely eerie feel—the empty eye sockets seemingly staring directly into the observer’s eyes.

In her previous projects and pieces, Boon has utilized paint as a medium, but has recently been experimenting with ceramics, sometimes also playing around with charcoal and watercolor. While her fundamental art style hasn’t changed, Boon’s typical composition and subjects of her artwork have evolved, gradually incorporating more abstract concepts.  

“In terms of the style, I’ve always drawn more realistically […] When I was 12[…] the subject of what I drew was a lot more boring, I just did animals or still-lifes but now I discuss with my teacher about the composition and like the subjects of each piece, and I actually put more thought into the subject and the meaning of my artwork,” said Boon.

As they’ve both taken Art-505 together and are now taking Art-600, a large part of Boon’s inspiration comes from Joy Kim ’23. Her newfound style was partly inspired from Kim’s artwork, striving to expand beyond realism in her compositions. Combined with her instinctive and impromptu art process, Boon’s increasingly creative art pieces span a wide range of ideas and styles. 

“What inspired me to do the looser drawing […] is Joy, because I’ve been looking at her art and I really like how loose her style is and there’s a lot more realism in my piece, and for the one I showed you with the curtains and everything, like I’m trying to do like Joy does—have looser styles of art,” said Boon.

While Boon finds inspiration from Kim’s style and technique, Kim admires Boon’s openness when approaching a new piece. Boon’s inclination to deviate from a set plan, according to Kim, aids her creativity and success in creating a masterpiece.  

“Her process is really spontaneous—she starts off with a plan but she barely sticks to the plan, but it’s good because all her pieces end up looking really cool,” said Kim.

As for the future, Boon wants to continue experimenting with ceramics, as well as try some new mediums including film photography and fashion. She is also thinking about somehow incorporating art into her other hobbies in unique intersectionalities, such as skating. 

“I want to keep working with ceramics because I like how the composition is more creative and free when I’m working with ceramics, so ceramics, film photography, […] Because I also skate I might want to connect art to skating, I haven’t figured out how yet, but maybe something like that,” said Boon.