Oh My Gourd, Ceramist Randy Au’s “Vegetable Series” Lands at John Wayne Airport

(SANTA ANA, CA) – John Wayne Airport (JWA) welcomes Hawaiian artist Randy Au and his ceramic art exhibit to the Vi Smith Concourse Gallery. 

“Vegetable Series” is inspired by Au’s love for nature. Whimsical in both color and shape, the display features ceramic shapes derived from squash gourds that are glossed and gilded in gold. The vibrant layers of décor and intricate design are inspired by Oriental, Egyptian, and American culture and history. 

Born and raised on the beautiful island of Oahu, Au’s love for clay began in high school. Au came to Southern California to pursue his craft in ceramics, studying at various institutions under various professors, ultimately receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts from California State University Fullerton. In 1987 Au founded the “Flying Cup Clay Studio,” paving the way for his profession as a full-time artist. 

Au’s creative endeavors are deeply rooted in Orange County’s art culture; including his participation in the emergence of Santa Ana’s Artist Village in 1994. His work was featured at the Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA) in a showcase titled “Pacific Craft Show. He was a guest curator for John Wayne Airport’s “Contemporary Clay” (2007-2008) exhibit. Au has been a ceramics instructor and Assistant Director at the Visual Arts Conservatory of the Orange County School of the Arts (OCSA) in Santa Ana, California, since 2002. 

Au’s high profile as an artist comes from his participation in local art events and programs. He has received many accolades and acknowledgments for his work in ceramics. “Vegetable Series” was awarded a Gold Medal in the “Discovery Award 1993” for Craft in California. The series was featured in various invitational exhibits in museums and show cased on television in a series of the Carol Duvall show called “Modern Masters” for HGTV.

Currently, Au resides in Santa Ana, CA, and divides his time between his art studio and working at OCSA.

The “Vegetable Series” is on exhibit post-security in the Thomas C. Riley Terminal, between Terminals B and C, across from Gate 14, until March 2023. 

For more information about this exhibit, please contact Jeffrey Frisch, John Wayne Airport Arts Program Coordinator, at Jfrisch@ocair.com.