|This biography from the Archives of AskART:|
|Born in California, Claude Horan became known for his figurative
ceramics sculpture; graceful, exquisitely glazed vessels; and for and
his contributions to the development of contemporary styles for that
medium. His works range from rough and nearly abstract to smooth
and highly simplified. He also had a long, distinguished career
of teaching at the University of Hawaii. He received a BA from
San Jose State University in 1942 and BA and MA degrees in art from
Ohio State University in 1946. |
Married to Suzi Pleyte Horan, he collaborated with her on some of his major projects.
In Manoa, Hawaii in 1947, he initiated the ceramics program and
continued to teach there until 1967 when he took a sabbatical and
studied glass blowing. Then he established a glass blowing
studio at the university in 1968.
In 1978, he became Professor Emeritus from the University of Hawaii.
"Horan has said, 'I came into art through the back door.” Growing up in
Long Beach, the artist’s early passions were swimming, water polo and
surfing. His abilities as a waterman led to his recruitment by
San Jose State University, where he chose art as his major because, he
admits, “Art—cinch courses—no homework—easy to keep eligible for
sports!' He liked ceramics because all he had to do was make
pots, and began to apply what he had learned from competitive sports to
this pursuit: 'Me against the wheel, striving for perfection, as I had
done with my swimming strokes and surfing techniques.' Gradually,
Horan’s interest in ceramics superceded his water activities, and he
began to concentrate on throwing pots full-time."
Horan left a position as an instructor in ceramics at San Jose State
University in 1947 to establish the ceramics program in the Manoa art
department and subsequently to become Chair of the Department.
"While Horan became known for his mastery of technical fundamentals, he
was more interested in the sculptural possibilities of clay and
encouraged his students, by example, to 'break all the so-called rules
of working with clay.' "
The Contemporary Museum, Honolulu and the Division of Ceramics and
Glass of the National Museum of American History (Washington, D.C.) are
among the public collections holding work by Claude Horan.
His sculptures in public places include:
Untitled 1976 sculpture, Leilehua High School, Honolulu, Hawaii
Ho?olaulea (1976) and Cecil (1976), Red Hill Elementary School, Honolulu, Hawaii
Vita Marinae, 1975, Waikiki Aquarium, Honolulu, Hawaii
Na he?enalu o kailua maluna o ke kilohana a na nalu, 1974, Kailua High School, Kailua, Hawaii
Ki?i Kalai Mea Pa'ani Na Kamali?i, 1974, Kealakehe Elementary School, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii
The Stallion and His Crew, 1979, Pukalani Elementary School, Pukalani, Hawaii
Moby Dick and Friends, 1980, Kekaha Elementary School, Kekaha, Hawaii
In the Spirit of the Koolaus, 1980, Kalaheo High School, Kailua, Hawaii
The Contemporary Museum Honolulu (quotations are from this sourcr)
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