1945 - October 22nd: Born in Los Angeles CA - My first teacher in clay was my grandmother, Sarah Hoover Hobson. She was a talented artist in many media, a graduate of the Chicago Art Institute. When I was a small child she would frequently visit and direct play with clay and paints. We used a low fire whiteware clay to model our creations, and commercial glaze and underglaze to decorate. Years later, when I was about twelve, she and my grandfather took me with them for a two week auto tour in Mexico. It was in the Tlaquepaque district of Guadalajara that I first saw pottery made on the potters wheel. It made quite an impression on me.
1968 - June: Received Bachelors degree in Economics from UCLA 1968.
1968 - July & August: Founder & President of "Seattle Free Food Experiment". A short lived but meaningful project which pooled the resources of street people in Seattle's University District & put on a nightly dinner party for 50 to 100 people.
1968 - September to December 1970: During this time period I was a graduate student & teaching assistant in the Economics Department at UCLA As I pursued my Doctoral studies in Economic Theory I eventually found myself alienated from the department over my support of the idea that a free market economy can and does create environmental degradation. As I saw it, while Adam Smith's famous "invisible hand" is guiding participants in the economy to financial prosperity, his "other invisible hand" is free to pick our pockets, leaving us environmentally impoverished. My participation in a public debate on this subject led to my inclusion in a multi-disciplinary task force establishing a graduate program in environmental studies at UCLA Following that, I was a teaching assistant for the first undergraduate course in environmental studies at UCLA.
1970 - December: Received Masters Degree in Economic Theory from UCLA
1971 - January: Moved to Bellingham, & worked with Melissa Queen to assist the transition of Bellingham's Food Co-op from a "food conspiracy" to its first storefront operation in Fairhaven. In the course of my work with the food co-op I became interested in working with clay through my association with The Good Earth Pottery Cooperative next door. My primary influence at the Good Earth Pottery was Leon Sarsozo. Leon was a very powerful figure, and much of that power he was able to translate into clay. His influence remains strong in my work.
1971- May to June 1975: During this period I pursued my interest in clay and crafts as an itinerant craftsperson traveling, working with, and learning from a variety of craftspeople throughout the western states. I worked briefly with Bertha Gotterup Baron in Maple Falls, WA, Fred Evangel at Evangel Pottery in Albuquerque, NM, endured a six month apprenticeship with Willard Spence in Taos, NM and spent a couple of years doing my own pottery and teaching introductory clay classes at "The Potters Studio" in Los Angeles, CA.
1975 - June: Moved back to Bellingham, WA & established "The Beginning". My home, pottery workshop, gallery, and pottery supply business all rolled into one in the outskirts of the Fairhaven District. During the time I owned "The Beginning" I participated in and helped to put on numerous craft fairs in the area. Most notably I promoted & coordinated the first two "Christmas in Fairhaven" multi-weekend craft fairs for Allied Arts. This event has now evolved into Allied Arts' annual "Christmas Craft Fair", and I believe it is still one of that organizations major sources of revenue. Professionally I participated in group & individual shows at the Roeder Home, Western Washington University, Gail Chase Gallery in Bellevue and the juried exhibition at the Bellevue Arts & Crafts Fair. I also published an article "Glazing Pottery with Mount Saint Helens Ash" in the Jan. 1981 issue of Ceramics Monthly.
1985 - July: By this time I had finally reached burn-out as a full time potter. I closed my pottery & supply business, and sold the house. For some time after this I resumed my traveling throughout the western states, especially Arizona & New Mexico, hoping to find some new inspiration to relight my creative fire. Gradually during this period I came to the realization that it was the obsessive commitment I had made to clay that led to my burnout, and that if I wanted to go on with my development as a potter I needed to diversify my pursuits so as to develop as a whole person. By early 1986 I had purchased property just outside of Ferndale, where I now live. It took several years of work, mostly by myself, to restore the buildings on the property; creating a facility in which I could resume my potting career, while at the same time teaching myself to work with computers, and establishing a large, beautiful & fruitful organic deep bed garden. In 1989 I finally began making pots once again, though this time I had established enough alternative sources of income that it was not necessary to support myself entirely with the income from potting. This has given me the opportunity to truly follow my own interests in clay, and has resulted in greater creative growth in my work than when clay was my sole preoccupation.
In just the last couple of years, I have begun to seek a wider audience for my work. I decided to start entering some competitions, and have been invited to some major exhibitions. The short list follows:
Nov. 1996 - The Tempestuous Teapot
May 1997 - Strictly Functional Pottery National
August 1997 - Northwest International Art Competition
Nov. 1997 - Oregon Clay '97 National "Made by Men"
April 1998 - Functional Pottery 1998
On Christmas Eve 2002 I underwent an MRI scan of my brain to determine the cause of headaches and other symptoms I was exhibiting. The scan revealed a large, but thankfully benign, tumor, called an Acoustic Neuroma. On January 9th, 2003 I had the tumor removed by the doctors at the House Ear Clinic in Los Angeles. Since then I've been in a slow process of recovery. It's been predicted that I will regain everything save the function of my right ear. As of my 58th birthday in Oct. 2003, I have recovered enough that I am making pots again. I am building a new and better kiln. Lingering numbness and partial paralysis of the right side of my face is slowly fading. My balance seems somewhat impaired, and this may be associated with the loss of my right ear. These problems should not interfere with continuing to follow my star. It's just the beginning of a new era of my life.
|Web Design by Kayo Parsons-Korn Design|