Nick de Vries
(American, b. 1943)
Frisian Horses, 2014
Ceramic; 30 x 240 x 240 inches
Before receiving his BFA from the University of Houston, Nick de Vries received his BA in biology from Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene and joined the U.S. Army as a Medical Service officer in Stuttgart, Germany. De Vries has used his dual interest in science and art to create pieces that respond to nature’s intriguing physical and chemical makeup, the seen and the unseen. In his work, the artist takes the science of human behavior and gives form to human traits and activities using nature’s architecture. De Vries often bases his work on Japanese rock and tea gardens, mainly from the Momoyama Dynasty. "Frisian Horses" reflects these overarching concerns through the juxtaposition of hard angular forms and soft sinuous shapes. The colors reflect the natural colors of clay and the aggregate added to it. A long-time faculty member of the University of Houston-Clear Lake, de Vries helped to establish the Applied Design and Visual Arts Studio Program. Over his long career, he has received numerous awards and recognitions including a Fulbright Travel Grant to the Slovak Republic, the Art Alliance Center and Clear Lake Outstanding Artist awards, as well as multiple teaching awards at UHCL.
University of Houston-Clear Lake