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"II started my career as a sculptor working in wood, creating forms using a lathe.  I was introduced to woodturning in 1991, and found the concept of creating objects with fair curves and flowing lines a pleasant diversion from my everyday engineering problem-solving.

 

Throughout my lifelong love of wood, I have evolved from a carpenter, to a woodworker, to a woodturner and finally to a sculptor.  My goal as a sculptor is to combine the circular form, fair curves and drama to create dynamic sculptural objects.  When working in wood, I am always looking for unique pieces of wood that will allow me to develop an interesting design for the sculptural object.

 

Wood is a very tactile medium.  It has been with great pleasure when I have watched somebody caress a piece of my sculpture.  This expression of the connection between my art and the admiring public is a source of great personal joy for me.

 

The discovery of the concept of negative space opened a creative door for me.  After seeing the work of stone sculptor Jesus Moroles I was inspired to investigate the wheel form.  My first wheel included a sphere representing a meteorite that penetrated the center of the form.  That pierce was entitled “Evolution of the Wheel”.  Little did I know at the time that this would be the start of a series in which I have explored the wheel form.

At the urging of a friend, I took a foundry course and in 2012 began casting my sculptural objects in bronze.  This resulted in a refocusing of my creative energy.  I had not realized how limiting working on the lathe had become to my work. I started looking at materials other than wood to create original sculpture as well as thinking outside the dimensional limitations of the lathe.  I am casting objects in bronze and stainless steel. 
 

As a sculptor, I am very pleased that several my sculptures are included in museum permanent collections and monument installations. The knowledge that the public will be to enjoy my viewing my sculptural objects long after my career is completed is personally rewarding.  Each day as I enter the studio brings a sense of excitement and I have the opportunity to pursue different and challenging paths in my creative adventure as a sculpture."

Education

Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering, Valparaiso University

The Glassell School of Art, The Museum of Fine Art, Houston

 

Selected Exhibitions

2016    “Turning Point” Woodturnings Evolution from Ancient Craft to Fine Art’ Pearl                          Fincher, Museum of Fine Art, Juror Terry Capps, Curator Pearl Fincher, Museum of                  Fine Art.

2014    Craft Texas 2014, Center for Contemporary Craft, Houston, Texas – Jurors; Carol                      Sauvion, creator of PBS series, Craft in America, Piero Fenci, Stephen F. Austin                        University, Ceramics Department Head and Clint Willour, Curator of Galveston Arts                Center, Galveston, TX.  Received the Award of Excellence.

2011    Craft Forms 2011, Wayne Art Center, Wayne, PA - juror: Elisabeth Agro, the Nancy                  M. McNeil Curator of American Modern and Contemporary Crafts and Decorative                  Arts of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA

2010    Craft Texas 2010, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, Houston, Texas – Jurors;                Gail M. Brown, Independent curator of contemporary craft from Philadelphia, PA;                    Cindy Hickok, fiber artist from Houston, Texas; and Paula Owen, president of the                    Southwest School of Arts and Crafts in San Antonio, Texas.

2009    Craft Forms 2009, Wayne Art Center, Wayne, PA - juror: Bruce W. Pepich, Executive                Director and Curator of Collections at Racine Art Museum.

            Turned to the Future: a Fresh Look at Wood Art,  American Association of                                Woodturners, Special Exhibitions Committee, Grovewood Gallery, Asheville, NC –                  jurors Anne Carlano, Director of Craft Design,  The Mint Museum: Arthur Mason,                    collector: Gretchen Keyworth, Director of the Fuller Craft Museum: Brent Skidmore,                Director of the University of North Carolina, Asheville Campus and Sherry Masters,                  Grovewood Gallery.

            Innovative Perspectives in Turning, The Lynn Tendler Bignell Gallery, Brookfield Craft              Center, Brookfield, Conn – juror: Albert LeCoff, Executive Director, Wood Turning                    Center

2004    Tree of Life Exhibit, Wood Turning Center, Philadelphia, PA – juror: Albert LeCoff,                    Executive Director, Wood Turning Center

            Craft Houston 2004: Texas, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, Houston, Texas              – Juror: Lawrence Riner, Curator Whitney Museum of American Craft.
2003    Craft Houston 2003: National, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, Houston,                    Texas – Juror: Lloyd Herman founding Director Renwick Gallery.

2001    National-Open Exhibit, Long Beach Arts, Long Beach, California – Juror Jen Grey,                  Professor CSULB

1998    Open Show. Art League of Houston, Texas, - Bert Long 1998 Texas Artist of the                        Year

            93rd National-Open Competition, Long Beach Arts, Long Beach, California – Juror                Anne B. Ayres Curator, Director of Exhibitions Otis College of Art and Design

1997    The Art of Craft, Long Beach Arts, Long Beach, California – Juror Adrian Saxe,                        Professor of Art UCLA
 

Museum Collections

Brauer Museum of Art, Valparaiso, Indiana

“A Journey in Contemporary Sculpture, with the Work of Jim Keller”

August 18, 2015 to December 13, 2015
 

Permanent Museum & Private Collections

Mobile Museum of Art, Mobile, Alabama

Fuller Craft Museum, Brocton, Massachusetts

Art Museum of South Texas, Corpus Christi, Texas

Bush Intercontinental Airport, Houston, Texas

Vogel Schwartz Sculpture Garden, Little Rock, Arkansas

Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland

American Association of Woodturners Gallery

JIM KELLER

WORKS FOR SALE