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Texas Master Series: James C. Wakins

Houston Center for Contemporary Craft presents this solo exhibition by Lubbock ceramicist and educator James C. Watkins, who was recently named a Texas Master by the center. Watkins received his MFA from Indiana University and a BFA from the Kansas City Art Institute. His work has been featured in 40 solo exhibitions and 164 group exhibitions around the world, and he has pieces in 23 permanent collections, including the White House Collection of American Crafts at the Clinton Library (Little Rock, Arkansas), the Shigaraki Institute of Ceramic Studies (Shigaraki, Japan), the Everson Museum (Syracuse, New York), and, most recently, the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum (Washington, D.C.) and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. With over 40 years of experience working with clay, Watkins masterfully constructs double-walled vessels, whose forms and surfaces are inspired by his memories of growing up in the South, encounters with nature, and his experience working in Asia. Building upon a history of tradition, he skillfully manipulates his clay surfaces using alternative firing techniques, creating lustrous and colorful surfaces enhanced by the atmosphere of the kiln. For some pieces, he collects dirt from the dust storms around his studio in order to create orange-to-black surfaces. As seen in his Double-Walled Basket (2018), Watkins also wields an iridescent rainbow of color through a fuming technique that he employs as the kiln cools down from a high firing.

When:

Jan. 30-May 8

Where:

Houston Center for Contemporary Craft HOUSTON, Texas

More Information:

Phone: 713-529-4848

Website: crafthouston.org

The February 2021 cover of Texas Highways Magazine, The Return of Car Culture


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