Anderson, James McConnell (Mac) – American Artist & Potter

James McConnell “Mac” Anderson (American/Mississippi, 1907 to 1998)

After Mac Anderson completed his studies at Tulane University School of Architecture, he joined his brothers Walter and Peter Anderson in Ocean Springs, MS, developing a series of small figurine sets at Shearwater Pottery. From these early collaborative works, Mac’s mature style emerged: an affinity for the flora, fauna, and people of the Gulf Coast that he beautifully captures through “reticulated floral designs” woven into exquisite patterns of daily life

The lasting legacy of the Andersons’ works is ubiquitous throughout the South. Mac’s pottery toured the U.S. and Europe in the late 1930s with the Robineaux Exhibition, and the brothers were commissioned by the Works Progress Administration (W.P.A.) to execute murals and ceramic tile panels for the Ocean Springs High School. According to Anne Craton, the field coordinator of the Public Works of Art Project, the Anderson commission was the “most significant and interesting works of art done under the auspice of the program.” Famous paintings by Mac, such as Scene of the Singing River and Pitcher Plants and Pine Trees, can be seen at the Jackson County Courthouse, Pascagoula and the Ocean Springs Women’s Club.
Reference: “James McConnell Biography,” Shearwater Pottery, Web, 9 Oct. 2013; Patti Carr Black, Art in Mississippi, 1720-1980 (Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 1998) 189.
Information Courtesy of Neal Auction Co., November, 2013.

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