Oral history interview with Ken Shores, 2007 November 13-14
Shores, Kenneth, 1928-
Riedel, Mija, 1958-
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America
Place of publication, production, or execution:
4 sound discs (7 hr.) : digital ; 2 5/8 in.
Transcript: 127 pages.
Originally recorded on 4 sound discs. Reformated in 2010 as 13 digital wav files. Duration is 7 hr.
An interview of Ken Shores conducted 2007 November 13-14, by Mija Riedel, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at Shores' home and studio, in Portland, Oregon.
Shores speaks of growing up during the Depression; working with clay in high school; collecting art at a young age; working part-time to pay for college; his introduction to religious philosophy; being drafted to Germany and touring Europe; going back to college for studio art; summer classes at Pond Farm; teaching during graduate school; his lack of interest in the technical aspects of clay; working for various studios and galleries; incorporating different techniques and materials into his work; creating works based on architecture; South American influences; becoming a regional representative for the ACC; teaching art at a private school; his profiles in magazines; traveling and collecting in India; the impact of his changing spirituality on his work; the importance of a positive attitude toward life; spiritually influential books; and his working process. Shores also recalls Isabel Schmier, Brian Connley, Victoria Avakian, Maud Kerns, Louis Bunce, Darren Pierce, Vivian Wilkenson, Max Nixon, Antonio Prieto, Kay McNab, Sue Cooley, Paul Soldner, Beatrice Wood, Trude Guermonfrez, Mary McFadden, Patrick Lennon, Mrs. Vanderbilt Webb, Don Foster, Marguerite Wildenhain, and others.
Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Ken Shores, 2007 November 13-14. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Funding for this interview was provided by the Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America. Funding for the digital preservation of this interview was provided by a grant from the Save America's Treasures Program of the National Park Service.
Ken Shores (1928- ) is an artist and teacher from Portland, Oregon. Mija Riedel (1958- ) is a curator and writer from San Francisco, California.
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001