Wk 10 – Artist Conversation – Tony Nguyen

For week 10, I managed to stumble into the Dr. Maxine Merlino Gallery and came across the artist: Tony Nguyen. His exhibit featured items that pertained to the adolescence of the audience and was very captivating as it was a ‘magical journey through candyland’.


I remember this toy machine that contained a little toy that is received and delivered at random. The machine costed a quarter to operate and I remember vividly asking my parents anytime I saw it, if I can have a quarter for a toy.

Nguyen is pursuing a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Metal crafting. He is going to graduate this year in the spring and is highly influenced by his dreams of achieving his passions in the art field.  However, working with different metals was not his initial dream. He was originally an Illustrations major. His professors did a wonderful job of imposing their standards onto Nguyen and as a result, dissuaded him into continuing down the path of illustrations. Then he found a window of opportunity to work with metals.


These three different items in the exhibits were all works that I deem as high caliber and time-demanding to create. His whole exhibit took about two years. Nguyen went on about how each different display took about a month to two months because of procrastination (not a surprise he says) and details. He enjoys working with metals because of their unique nature; saying that it is not as complicated as we make it out to be. The classmates in the exhibit were wow-ed of the metal claw and the “Pot-head” in the far right. It’s funny because Nguyen says that he has never ‘hit the blunt’ before and it was coincidental that he named that piece the Pot-head.

The whole art work and details of his pieces is quite amazing and I am intrigued that he managed to push through and dedicated two years to the exhibit. I personally see it difficult to go on that long without an incentive, but then it hit me; if we are passionate about something, we can without a doubt, accomplish anything.



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