Marty Ray - Ceramic Artist and Educator
Link to full Resume' - bottom of this page
MY STORY ..... my art ...... my life
Childhood and educaton: I was born in Dallas during WWII; my father was a soldier in Burma and returned when I was 2 ½. My parents encouraged my creative nature from a young age. My mother, a self-taught artist, instigated home art projects for my sister Jeannie and I She even had us paint murals on our living room and kitchen walls. My father took me often to the Dallas Museum of Art (in Fair Park). At age 12, I was given a small oil paint set. My painting “career” began. During high school I was enrolled in scholarship painting classes with artist, Chapman Kelley at the DMA. I was lucky to have wonderful HS art teachers: Paul Harris and Carolyn Dodson. Moving on to college, I chose East Texas State Univ in Commerce and studied with printmaker, Chas McGough and painter, Dr. Paul Kelpe. Painting and printmaking became my art passions. I began teaching art in DISD in 1965. In 1967-68 I taught HS art in Tokyo, Japan for the US Dept of Defense. I travelled throughout Japan and visited Cambodia, Thailand, the Philippines and Hong Kong. In that special year, my eyes opened to new cultures and for the first time, the beauty of ceramic art.
I discovered clay: In the late 60's I began working seriously with clay, taking classes from sculptor, Octavio Medellin and potters, Michael Obranovich, John Miller (TWU) and John McElroy (SMU). Clay grabbed my full attention! I found the ceramic medium to offer a range of unbelievable possibilities. One could paint, draw (incise), sculpt, make pots, experiment with glazes. While teaching art at Bryan Adams HS, I developed art classes that focused completely on ceramics. In 1976, I began an MFA program at SMU, concentrating on sculpture, ceramics and art education. I created a series of large slab figures and began also to explore drawing and painting on clay surfaces. In 1978 I began teaching ceramics, sculpture and 3D design at North Lake College in Irving. I retired from teaching after a 53 year career in August 2017. I’m now happily a full-time artist continuing some part-time teaching and staying very active in the Dallas Art community. My work continues with sculptural pottery form with incised and slip painted surfaces that often tell a stories.
Life with another artist: In 1971, I married Richard, who is also an artist. Painting is his primary focus: portraits, flowers, White Rock Lake landscapes and work from imagination. For a number of years, we sometimes collaborate with Richard incising and slip painting my pottery forms. In 2012, I asked him to paint line drawings I put onto canvas. Using imagery from my pottery, I draw then he selects the color scheme and paints. The paintings are related to the imagery on my pots. Working collaboratively in ceramics is historically common, however I’m not sure about collaboration in painting.How fun it’s been to have a partner in life also be a partner in art.
Ceramic work today: I have never tired of combining incised and painted imagery onto a ceramic form. Most often the forms are wheel-thrown vessels but also include slab wall works. There is a never-ending challenge it seems to combine feelings about life and art into a design that compliments a ceramic form I create. The surface imagery is sparked by memories of the past and current events as well as a lifetime of attending art exhibits, teaching art and studying art history. From the first time I drew with a crayon and painted color with a brush, my life in art had begun….. and it continues!
At work in the Barbaree Studio with Austin
Goldmark Cultural Center, Milde Gallery Exhibit