Anne Neilson Fine Art is excited to exhibit Jim Keffer’s exquisite pottery for sale as part of our holiday gifting pop-up party and Small Works Exhibition! Jim is widely known around the Charlotte area for his car dealerships but many are less aware of his hidden talent as a potter, which he has been practicing and refining for over 30 years! Keep reading to learn more about Jim and how he got started creating these unique and stunning vases.
“Keffer’s introduction to the world of pottery began accidentally with an elective class as a freshman at Appalachian State in the eighties. Unbeknownst to him, he had a natural talent and a love for throwing pottery. His talent flourished, especially under one fabulous professor and with many hours spent in the studio, throwing pottery and throwing away even more pottery. Soon after graduation, he got involved in the family car business and with raising a family he had to slowly put to rest his pot throwing skills. Now that his children have flown the coop his passion has been reignited. He truly has the ability to create beautiful and intricate pieces of artwork that he hopes to share with everyone.
Jim Keffer, owner and CEO of Keffer Auto Group is an artist working with bodies of clay to create pottery through processes like Raku, Saggar Firing and his personal favorite, Crystalline Glazing.”
Name: Jim Keffer
Hometown: York, PA
Currently Living: Charlotte, NC
When did you first become interested in pottery?
I graduated High School and attended Appalachian State University for two years. In my first semester at App. I hedged my bets a little and signed up for what I’d hoped would be an easy A, Introduction to Pottery! I’ve never really been very good at moderation, and once I started throwing pots, I was hooked.
Describe your aesthetic in three words:
Crystaline thrown porcelain.
Who inspires you personally and/or professionally?
I read Victor Frankl’s book, “Man’s Search for Meaning” recently. That was inspiring. I also enjoy Malcomb Gladwell’s books and reading the Biographies of influential figures in History like Ulysses S Grant.. From a Pottery perspective, I love the work of Master Potter, Shoji Hamada who passed away in the 70s. More recently I found works on You Tube by Hsin Chuen Lin and Matt Horne that I loved and imitated shamelessly.
Biggest accomplishment to date personally and/or professionally?
I don’t typically think in these terms. I focus more on what is still left to do than what has been done already. Some of the things I’ve enjoyed doing most include; (in no particular order) playing High School football at Charlotte Catholic, being married to Sandy for almost 29 years, watching my kids grow into young adults, finishing Ironman New Zealand, figuring out how to make Crystaline pots after a huge number of failed attempts, Achieving Top Sales accomplishments for the state in4 separate brands, helping other people buy their own dealership and secure, and earning enough to be able to help those with the greatest need in our community.
A random fact about you?
Today I wear a size small t-shirt and weigh 157 lbs. When I went to Charlotte Catholic, I was co-Capt of the football team, weighed 197 lbs.and wore an extra large t-shirt. It’s like I’ve had the opportunity to lead two different lives and I’ve enjoyed both immensely.
One thing you couldn’t live without?
There’s lots of things that would be difficult to live without, but I don’t care for the word can’t. Among the most difficult would of course be my wife and kids, the ability to go for a swim or run, my pottery wheel, my sight and the ability to laugh at myself.
If you could switch lives with one person for a day, who would it be?
Maybe Richard Branson. I think he’s very cool and appears to have become very successful without sacrificing his lifestyle and personality.
Describe your artistic practice and preparation:
I enjoy throwing challenging Porcelain shapes without a huge amount of forethought. My opportunities to throw are usually at night after I finish my emails and on the weekends if Sandy and I don’t have other plans.
Favorite piece you’ve made to date and why?
I have lots of favorites. An old teapot I made in College, A Saggar Fired Vase I made a few years ago with a combination of terasigulata, ferit chloride and miracle grow is another favorite, and my recent favorite is one of the Crystaline pieces I’ll be bringing to the pop up sale.
Stop by ANFA now to see Jim’s beautiful pottery!