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James Surls

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James Surls

(American 1943 - )

James Surls (1943-) is an American artist who has derived much of his artistic inspiration from living closely with nature in East Texas and Colorado. After graduating from Sam Houston State Teachers College in 1966, Surls earned an M.F.A. from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1968. Throughout his career, he has developed a handcrafted, rustic aesthetic that has taken form in drawings, prints and sculptures depicting natural and human forms. “White-Tipped Blooming” exemplifies many outstanding characteristics of Surls’s oeuvre, which call to mind the artistic traditions on which he builds his practice: the unique oak-and-steel construction consists of expressively carved biomorphic forms that conjure primitivist aesthetics and mythical imagery of early 20th century avant-garde sculpture, while the humble, organic materials pay homage to American Folk Art traditions. Surls has exhibited widely across the country, and his work is housed in dozens of prominent institutions such as the Los Angeles County Museum; the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts; the High Museum, Atlanta; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York as well as numerous private and corporate collections.


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