Three-time U.S. Pottery Olympics Champion
1992 World Champion
Since 1976, Bruce Odell has been sharpening his vision and skill at the potter's wheel. Designing and producing clay lamp bases for an international decorative accessories firm provided years of practice. In 1991, he entered the United States Pottery Olympics on a whim, and halfway through the contest realized he was winning. As it turn out, the countless hours of lamp production paid off in the ability to make large cylinders, platters, and spheres, and he won this competition three years in a row. In 1992 he entered the World Championship in Faenza, Italy. While the rest of the potters were making beautiful amphorae, kylixes, and other classic shapes from antiquity, Bruce made pots with designs developed in a barn in north Louisiana. Texturing a cylinder and then expanding the shape from within, he created textures mysteriously related to nature, as are all internally expanded surfaces, from tree bark and human skin to geological features, clouds, and even the ripples and waves of a body of water. The judge crowned him, "Principe Mondial Esteta - World Prince of Aesthetics", with a genuine crown and a million lire first prize, followed by a fabulous feast in a 13th century ballroom, with Venetian glass chandeliers and frescoed ceilings, in honor of the first American to win the World Championship. Bruce now makes his home in Lafayette, LA, the heart of Cajun Country.
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