As far back as I can remember I have built and put things together, feeling a need to use interesting materials gathered close at hand or on special “wanderings.” Born in Oklahoma and raised in Nevada and New Mexico, I grew up being given free rein to really see the country around me and explore my creative strengths.
Later, while earning a BFA in sculpture and ceramics, I worked as a carpenter and cabinetmaker, not realizing I was headed for a career as a furniture maker. Since 1977, I have lived on the rolling plains of the northeast Texas Panhandle. It is here—in this somewhat isolated and sparsely populated area, this most-plowed, piped and pumped of places—that I have developed my Prairie View style.
I have always been drawn to the ruins and archetypal structures of the plains with their textures and ghost prints of long use and change. Land use and social structure on the southern High Plains have been and continue to be in a state of flux. In a wide-open country with a sometimes unforgiving climate, there is a danger in rushing from one discard pile of change to the next.
A search for a way to record the wear patterns on land and lives, as well as a need to create a cultural and personal sense of place, has led me to create regionally-inspired furniture—reliquaries of sorts — combining fine domestic woods with castoff ag machinery parts and occasional accent lumber from the ruins. Landscape and weather events, profiles of farm implements and buildings all figure into the designs. Each piece of Prairie View Furniture is a one-of-a-kind sculpture with a story to tell.
Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Sculpture and Ceramics
Phillips University in Enid, Oklahoma
Self employed cabinetmaker in Lipscomb, Texas
• Artist specializing in one-of-a-kind furniture pieces that in the first half of this period incorporated recycled wood and vintage ag hardware. Since 2004, the design emphasis has evolved to include the use of newer wood along with found metal objects.
• Exhibited in more than 70 select shows, most of which were high end venues involved with non-profit organizations that received a portion of the sales; established limited gallery representation; maintained a steady stream of commission work; and developed a loyal collector base.
• Created a unique art/history exhibit, “Art from the Ruins” sponsored by the Canadian Arts Alliance of Canadian, Texas.
• “Art from the Ruins” became a traveling exhibit displayed in 13 venues throughout the Texas Panhandle and western Oklahoma from 2003 through 2005.
• “Art from the Ruins” is now on permanent exhibit at the Wolf Creek Heritage Museum in Lipscomb, Texas
J. Michael Patrick Best Woodworking Craftsmanship Award at the 2004 Western Design Conference held in Cody, Wyoming.
Best of Show Award at the 2010 Celebration of the Arts in Midland, Texas.
Honorable Mention Honorable Mention at the 2011 Celebration of the Arts in Midland, Texas.
Best Woodwork Award at 2012 Las Cruces Arts Fair in Las Cruces, New Mexico.
3rd Place Award at the 2012 Celebration of the Arts in Midland, Texas.
Exhibitors’ Choice Runner-Up Co-Winner at 2013 Cody High Style in Cody, Wyoming.
Exhibitors’ Choice Runner-Up at 2014 Cody High Style in Cody, Wyoming.
Best of Woodwork, Sculpture and Metal at Las Cruces Arts Fair in Las Cruces, New Mexico.