South Texas Ceramic Showdown: Constants & Variables

South Texas College gears up for its tenth annual RGV Ceramics Summer Showdown

Summer Postcard frontThursday, June 16, 2016—
6:00pm –8:00pm Opening Receptions at the STC Library Art Gallery and STC Building B Gallery.

Friday, June 17, 2016—
9:00am – 12:00pm Clay Demonstrations at STC’s Ceramic Studios
1:30pm – 4:30pm Clay Demonstrations at STC’s Ceramic Studios

Saturday, June 18, 2016—
9:00am – 12:00pm Clay Demonstrations at Ceramic Studios
1:30pm – 3:30pm Ceramics Art Talks w Pat Johnson and Jim Bob Salazar, STC Building B, Room 129.

South Texas College’s Library Art Gallery, together with the college’s Visual and Performing Arts Department, brings the Rio Grande Valley its tenth annual ceramics exhibition and workshop, “Constants and Variables: A South Texas Ceramic Showdown.” All activities are free and open to the public. The exhibit will be on view from June 16 to July 25, 2016, at the college’s Pecan Campus Library Art Gallery and at the Art Building B Gallery, located at 3201 West Pecan Blvd. in McAllen. The event includes a full display of ceramic work by distinguished Texas ceramicists Jim Bob Salazar and Pat Johnson as well as ceramic works by students and professors from 13 regional universities and community colleges.

A three-day ceramics conference will begin with an opening reception on June 16 at the Pecan Campus Library Art Gallery and the Art Building B Gallery from 6-8 p.m. The conference will continue with Ceramic Demonstrations on June 17 from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. and 1:30 – 4:30 p.m., and June 18 at 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. at STC’s Pecan Campus Art Building (Bldg. B) Ceramics Lab, Room 115. Art talks will be held on Saturday, June 18 from 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. at the same location.

“We are delighted to have the opportunity to continue with our annual Ceramic Showdown that began informally in 2007 at South Texas College,” said Chris Leonard, STC ceramics instructor and exhibit/conference organizer. “This year we are fortunate to have a pair of Texas based artists with Pat Johnson returning with her politically powerful work and paired with extraordinarily talented thrower, Jim Bob Salazar. This should be an informative event in terms of content, top flight form and process, as well as viewers being able to see the connections that artists decide to make in and outside of the studio.”

Jim Bob Salazar received his Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of North Texas in Denton. In 1998, he moved to Alpine, Texas where he taught ceramics, along with sculpture, photography and design, for nearly fifteen years near Big Bend National Park at Sul Ross State University. In 2013, he decided to retire from teaching and pursue pottery full time. Salazar creates highly skilled, functional pottery and is an active exhibitor in Texas, participating in over 25 art festivals a year.

Pat Johnson has been working in clay for over 40 years. About her work, Johnson says, “Creating art helps me clarify what I feel and believe. Be it a social, political statement or a personal one.” Her work has been featured in many solo and group shows in Texas including the McNay Art Museum in San Antonio, D. Berman Gallery in Austin and Hooks-Epstein Gallery in Houston as well as during numerous ceramic annual conferences. In addition to her extensive studio practice and exhibit history, Johnson has been commissioned for ceramic tile murals for the College Station Public Library, Monument Hill State Park, Sacred Heart Catholic Church and other murals in Longview, Waco and Austin. She has won awards from the Texas Clay Artist Association and her work is included in the book 500 Tiles: An Inspiring Collection of International Work.

Participating institutions include Baylor University, Clarion University of Pennsylvania, Mesa Community College, McLennan Community College, Northwest Vista College, Ouachita Baptist University, Old Dominion University, South Texas College, Southeast Missouri State University, Texas A&M University-Kingsville, University of Central Missouri, University of North Texas, University of Texas Rio Grande, and University of Texas San Antonio.
STC’s Library Art Gallery exhibits regional, national and international artwork, explores new visions and theories of creativity, and introduces innovative artistic expressions to the South Texas region.

For more information contact Gina Otvos at (956) 872-3488, or via email at or visit