Humboldt, Tennessee



Social media:

Instagram @horacio_casillas_jr


  • BFA: Angelo State University
  • MFA: University of North Texas

Full- or part-time potter:

Part-time potter 

Gallery representation: 

Residencies (past and present):

  • 2018–2019 The Epic residency (Texas)
  • 2021–2022 Arrowmont School of Arts and
    Crafts (Tennessee)
  • May 2022: Township10 (North Carolina)
  • Currently: Companion Gallery (Tennessee)

Clay Body: Laguna SB Red

Firing temperature: Cone 6

Atmosphere: Oxidation

Surface treatment: Terra sigillata

Forming Method: Slab building

Favorite tool/tools in your toolbox: A wooden sculpting stylus I use to finish my handles

Describe your studio: I am in a shared studio with 4 other artists. We each have our designated areas we work in, but the space is pretty open overall. 

Best thing about your studio? The colleagues I share it with

Wish list for your studio? A Blaauw kiln

Describe a typical day or session in the studio: I arrive at 9am and work for a couple of hours toward completing residency duties, then I have the rest of the day to work on my own stuff until around 6pm when I go home. 

Describe the first piece you made in clay that you thought had potential/felt like your own style: I made a holy-water font in graduate school from ¾-inch-thick slabs, something I was told was never allowed. The piece was 12×18×8 inches and hung on the wall like a sconce with a bowl meant to hold holy water.

What are you inspired by? I’m inspired by architecture, geometry, ornamentation, and Gothic cathedrals, but over all by my Catholic faith.

What is your process for finding/designing new forms? I do a few different things. Sometimes I sketch out my ideas, often times I search for churches to visit when I travel, but most of the time I search the web. 

Who are your mentors? I have many mentors, mostly family and parish priests, but when it comes to art I’ve made some friends along the way that have been motivators and supporters of me and my work—people like Bill Griffith, Eric Botbyl, and Justin Rothshank. 

Favorite piece in your ceramic collection? A mug by Matt Repsher

Best piece of advice you ever received? Tell the truth.

Best advice you can give to other potters? There is more to this life. For those of you whose career is pottery, find a hobby. For those of you whose hobby is pottery, it could be more than that. As humanity we should strive to bring beauty into the world, but as artists we have a responsibility to do so.

To read more about Horacio Casillas’ forming process, take a look at the article, "Contemplative Carving."

Topics: Ceramic Artists