(April 30, 2013) -- Ken Little, professor of art in the UTSA College of Liberal and Fine Arts, is one of only a handful of artists in Austin today for a ceremony recognizing the latest appointments by the Texas Commission on the Arts. Little was named the 2014 Texas State Visual Artist 3D. Created by the 77th L egislature, the positions are for one-year terms.
Appointees were chosen by a Legislature-appointed committee for the exceptional quality of their work and their outstanding commitment to the arts in Texas. Additional appointments for 2014 include Dean Young as Texas Poet Laureate, Julia Speed as Texas State Visual Artist 2D and Flaco Jimenez as Texas State Musician.
"The great talents of the 2013-2014 state artists, along with all of those who were nominated, help contribute to a distinctive cultural identify that makes Texas a great place to live, work and visit," said state Rep. Ryan Guillen, chairman of the House Committee on Culture, Recreation and Tourism. "It is important that we celebrate the distinguished career achievements of these artists who have enhanced the lives of so many."
Representing a variety of sculptural media, Little's work has been featured in more than 250 group exhibitions, 45 solo exhibitions, and public and private collections across the United States. The work reflects his need to invent and evolve.
National and local publications including Art in America, Art Week and Sculpture magazines have reviewed his creations, and his sculptures have been featured in numerous catalogues. Little's work was the subject of two monographs: "Ken Dawson Little: A Catalog of Works" and "Ken Dawson Little: A Bestiary of Damaged Goods." His retrospective catalog "Ken Little: Little Changes" with essays by Dave Hickey and Kay Whitney was published in 2008.
A recipient of many grants, Little has received two major individual artist fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Arts Industry grant from the Kohler Co., the Mid America Art Alliance Sculpture Fellowship and the Penny McCall Foundation's Visual Fellowship.
"I am honored and happy to represent UTSA statewide with this appointment," said Little. "I am hoping that this will help recruit more graduate students to our master of fine arts programs and also attract additional scholarship funding to support their work."
Since joining UTSA in 1988 as a professor in the Department of Art and Art History, Little has helped develop UTSA's graduate program into one of the nation's best, ranking No. 13 by U.S. News and World Report. The recently opened graduate sculpture and ceramic studio with world-class facilities has helped to recruit more international students to the M.F.A. program. While at UTSA, Little's students have won prizes, awards and fellowships, and some have also moved on to complete residencies.
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