Two artworks by ceramist Yary Livan, Adjunct Professor of Art at Middlesex Community College, have been added to the permanent collections of the Smithsonian Institution’s Sackler/Freer Gallery in Washington, D.C.

Smithsonian Curator of Ceramics Louise Cort visited the Lowell artist’s studio and selected an elephant pot and a vase to be included in the Asian art galleries’ permanent collections. Both pieces were fired in MCC’s Cambodian wood-fired kiln.

Livan’s works were also featured in “The Glazed Elephant: Ceramic Traditions in Cambodia,” a recent exhibition at the Sackler Gallery exploring the ceramic tradition of the Angkor kingdom (802-1431). To celebrate his accomplishments, Livan participated in a series of public programs, including an artist talk, and ceramic workshops for adults and children at the District Clay Center, a new ceramics facility in Washington, D.C.

In 2015, Livan was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship, the nation’s highest honor in the folk and traditional arts. He received a 2012 Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellowship.

Trained at the Royal University of Fine Arts in Phnom Penh, Livan now lives in Lowell and joined the Middlesex faculty in 2012. He is believed to be one of the few ceramists to survive Cambodia’s brutal Pol Pot-era genocide and the only known to be living in the U.S. Livan helped build a smokeless, wood-fired kiln in Lowell National Historical Park, which he uses to share traditional Cambodian techniques as part of MCC ceramics courses and the national park’s public programs.