Fresno lost an acclaimed artist on June 6 when Craig Easter, a noted ceramicist, died. He was 62. Services are Saturday, June 18.
I was alerted to Easter’s sudden death by Ritsuko Miyazaki of Clay Mix Gallery, where Easter had just finished a solo show.
Ritsuko told me that Easter exhibited through the American Craft Council (ACC) for more than 30 years, a distinctive honor. He was an emeritus member of the Association of California Clay and Glass Artists since 1980 (members are primarily Bay Area artists).
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With his experiences exhibiting all over the U.S. as well as in the Bay Area, Craig Easter always tried to raise the quality of artwork produced in the Fresno area. He served as president of the San Joaquin Clay and Glass Association for three years. Craig began teaching pottery classes at Clay Mix in 2008 as a way of sharing his knowledge and raising the aesthetic standards for ceramics in the Fresno area. Craig had become a mentor to hundreds of students and ceramic artists in the Fresno area. Some of his students established a co-op clay studio, called “Clay Hands” which is still in operation in downtown Fresno. Some have gone on to set up studios of their own.
Craig Easter has been an important figure in the arts in our community, and he will be greatly missed by students, collectors and fellow artists alike.
Easter’s services are 11 a.m. Saturday, June 18, at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 50 E. Santa Ana Ave., followed by a reception.