The Dictionary of American Studio Ceramics, 1946 Onward
The Dictionary of American Studio Ceramics, 1946 Onward
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1940 Born Corpus Christi, Texas
1960 AA Commercial Art, South Plains College, Texas
1962 BA Painting, Commercial Art, Southwestern Oklahoma State University, Weatherford, Oklahoma
1964-1966 Graduate Study, Ceramics, Sculpture, Art Education, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas
1970 MFA Art Ceramics, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona
PRIMARY WORK EXPERIENCE
1962-1964 Technical Illustrator
1965 Graduate Teaching Assistant, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas
1966 -1968 Instructor of Art, Hardin-Simmons University, Abilene, Texas
1969 Ceramics -Graduate Teaching Assistant, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona
1970-2005 Professor, Ceramics Head, Grossmont College of Art, El Cajon, California
Les Lawrence is most well-known for sculptural series based on functional forms utilizing topical themed decals and transfer surface techniques on thin-walled unglazed porcelain.
Lawrence was an early innovator creating a number of silkscreen techniques necessary to create the work he visualized. He developed a water-based ink that he could silkscreen, paint and draw onto a plaster bat and a way to pour a thin slab of casting slip onto the bat. This process resulted in thin porcelain slabs that picked up the images from the surface of the plaster bat. Lawrence used these slabs to produce an ongoing series of work, the New Vision Series. All the sculptures in this series are named New Vision followed by the object’s generic name, i.e. teapot, cup, vessel. Lawrence also developed the use of magnetic toner laser prints as ceramic decals.
Lawrence began his career as a department store illustrator. He returned to school to study sculpture, ceramics and watercolor painting. After graduate school, Lawrence began a career as a ceramic sculptor and teacher. During his career, he created dinnerware before moving away from truly functional work to sculptural forms based on the functional form. Lawrence used surface techniques and decorations to comment on social and political issues. He added imagery using transfer techniques and decals he created himself. Lawrence’s images often reflect his commitment to social and political ideals.
In addition to his studio practice, Lawrence maintained an active academic career that began in 1966 when he was invited to establish the ceramics and sculpture program at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas. In 1970 he became Professor then Ceramics Head at Grossmont College of Art in El Cajon, California where he remained until his retirement in 2005.
Agency of Czech Ceramic Design - Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic
Arizona State University Art Museum, Tempe, Arizona
Cedar Rapids Art Museum, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Celestial Seasonings, Tea Pot Collection, Boulder, Colorado
Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, California
Eastern Oregon State College, La Grande, Oregon
Everson Museum Of Art, Syracuse, New York
Flint Institute of Arts, Flint, Michigan
Grossmont College, El Cajon, California
Hardin-Simmons University Collection, Abilene, Texas
International Ceramic Center, Kecskemet, Hungary
Lubbock Municipal Art Center, Lubbock, Texas
Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts, Montgomery, Alabama
Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, Washington
Phoenix Airport Collection, Phoenix Arizona
Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, Arizona
Racine Art Museum, Racine, Wisconsin
Ross C. Purdy Museum of Ceramics, Westerville, Ohio
Southern Connecticut State University, New Haven, Connecticut
Southland Museum, Invercargill, New Zealand
University of Wales, Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom
Utah State University, Logan, Utah
Western Washington State University, Bellingham, Washington
Witte Museum, San Antonio, Texas
Won-Kwang University, Won Kwang, Korea
Yuma Fine Arts Association, Yuma, Arizona
“Acquisitions.” American Craft (April/May 1993).
“Affairs of the Heart.” San Diego Home/Garden Magazine (October 1987).
“A Helping Hand.” The Californian, November 30, 1988.
Burkett, Richard. Masters of Porcelain. Asheville, NC: Lark Books, 2008.
“Clay Conquers San Diego.” San Diego Arts Monthly (March 1993).
Conrad, John W. Contemporary Ceramic Techniques. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1979.
“Crafts Artist at Museum.” San Diego Union, February 20, 1993.
Delaney, Susan J. “Les Lawrence’s New Visions.” Ceramic Arts and Perception, no. 9 (1992).
Fina, Angela and Jonathan Fairbanks. The Best of Pottery. Rockport, MA: Quarry Books, 1996.
Flint Institute of Arts. Function, Form, & Fantasy: the Collection of Dr. Robert and Deanna Harris Burger. Flint, MI: Flint Institute of Arts, 2016.
Kent, Wade. Alternative Photographic Processes: A Resource Manuel for the Artist, Photographer, Craftsperson. Morgan and Morgan, 1978.
Grupe, Art. “Luster Glazes Using a Torch.” Ceramics Monthly 21 (June 1973).
Hopper, Robin. The Ceramic Spectrum. Radnor, PA: Chilton Book Co., 1984.
Hunt, Bill. 21st Century Ceramics in the United States and Canada. American Ceramics Society, 2003.
Joiner, Dorothy. “The Body in Clay.” Ceramics Monthly 50, no.10 (December 2002).
Koopman, Debra. “Jaye Lawrence and Les Lawrence.” Artweek 36, no. 2 (April 1993).
Kriwanek, Franz F. Keramos. Dubuque, IA: Kendall, Hunt Publishing, 1970.
Lark Books. 500 Figures in Clay: Ceramic Artists Celebrate the Human Form. Asheville, NC: Lark Books, 2004.
Lauria, Jo. California Design: The Legacy of West Coast Craft and Style. San Francisco, CA: Chronicle Books, 1976.
Lawrence, Les and Paul Andrew Wandless. “Les Lawrence Borders in Flux = Las Fronteras en Fusion.” San Diego, CA: National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts, 2003. DVD.
Les Lawrence. “Freedom to Experiment, in Les Lawrence: a Ceramics Monthly Portfolio.” Ceramics Monthly 41 (April 1993).
“Les Lawrence Artist of the Month.” Phoenix Magazine, October 2013.
"Master of Their Crafts." The San Diego Union, November 19, 1986.
Nelson, Glen C. and Richard Burkett. Ceramics: A Potter’s Handbook. Boston, MA: Cengage Learning, 1998.
Nigrosh, Leon. Claywork: Form and Idea in Ceramic Design. Worcester, MA: Davis Publications, 1975.
____________ . Clayworks II: Form and Idea in Ceramic Design. Worcester, MA: Davis Publications, 1986.
_____________.Clayworks III: Form and Idea in Ceramic Design. Worcester, MA: Davis Publications, 1989.
Nigrosh, Leon. Sculpting Clay. Worcester, MA: Davis Publications, 1991.
“People and Places.” American Craft (June/July 1993).
Peterson, Susan. The Craft and Art of Clay. London, England: Calmann & King LTD, 2000.
Rhodes, Daniel. Clay and Glazes for the Potter. Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2001.
“San Diego Craftsman.” Ceramics Monthly (February 1991).
Schwartz, Judith. Confrontational Ceramics. New York, NY: Rizzoli, 2008.
Scott, Paul. Ceramics and Print. London, England: A & C Black Publisher, 1995.
_________. Painted Clay: Graphic Arts and the Ceramic Surface. New York, NY: Watson Guptill, 2000.
_________and Terry Bennet. Hot Off the Press. London, England: Bellew Publishers, 1996.
Shafer, Thomas. Pottery Decoration. New York, NY: Watson-Guptill, 1976.
Speight, Charlotte F. Hands in Clay. Pleasant Grove, UT: Mayfield Publications, 1994.
Tarateta, Maja. “Functional Art Takes Form in Art Galleries Across America.” Art Business News 28, no, 6 (June 2001).
“The Evocative Object.” Ceramics: Art and Perception, no. 31 (1998).
Timmins, Christine. “Creativity is Their Cup of Tea.” The Boston Globe, December 6, 2000.
“Viewpoint: Ceramics.” Ceramics Monthly (February 1979).
Wechsler, Susan. Low-Fire Ceramics. New York, NY: Watson-Guptill, 1981.
Wilson, Lana. Firing Metal with Clay.” Clay Times (July/August 1999).
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Source: Elaine Levin Archive, University of Southern California
Citation: "The Marks Project." Last modified October 4, 2019. http://www.themarksproject.org:443/marks/lawrence