The Ohio Artist Registry (OAR) is an exciting opportunity for artists to share their work, connect with the creative community, and establish an online presence—all on a free, virtual platform! The OAR encourages artists working in all art forms, throughout Ohio and beyond,  to create a profile, which allows them to better promote themselves and their work. Being listed in the OAR provides artists with new opportunities to share their work with clients, galleries, patrons, and audiences. A listing in the OAR does not confer an endorsement, approval, or verification by the Ohio Arts Council.
For more information, contact Kathy Signorino, artist programs director, at or 614-728-6140.

2024 Ohio Artist Registry Juried Exhibition

Jim Bowling

Professor Otterbein UniversityArt & Art History
Home 617 Garrett Dr. County: Franklin
Columbus OH 43214 United States
Home Phone: 614 634 3505 Website:


Jim Bowling is a sculptor living and working in Columbus, Ohio. Focusing on contemporary expressions of the male form, he primarily works in clay but frequently incorporates found objects into his work. In addition to his studio practice, he is a Professor of Art at Otterbein University’s Department of Art and Art History, teaching in the areas of ceramics, sculpture and 3D design.  Jim received a BS from The Ohio State University where he also pursued post-baccalaureate studies in ceramics. He received an MFA in ceramics from Kent State University.

As a contemporary ceramic sculptor, Jim is rooted in the material and craft traditions of ceramics, using these techniques to explore concepts related to the construction of personal identity from disparate life experiences. He often uses spiritual, sexual, and political themes, peppered with a slightly twisted sense of humor, to explore identity through the male nude. Jim creates unexpected textures and surface patterns in his forms to underscore and express the narratives of each work. He is influenced and inspired by the ceramic artists of the California Funk Art movement, and Surrealist ideology.

Jim’s work has exhibited regionally, nationally, and internationally, with exhibitions including the San Angelo National Ceramics Competition, and at CRETA Rome both as an artist-in-residence and as part of Rome Art Week (RAW). His work is in several private collections as well as the Massillon Museum in Massillon, OH. Jim is a member of the National Council on Education in Ceramic Arts and serves as a board member for Ohio Designer Craftsman. 

Artist Statement

As a sculptor working primarily with the figure, I find the male form a potent agent for dialogue and personal narrative. These narratives range from crucial personal and global conversations to a means of expressing themes of desire and sexuality. I use the body to discuss social, political, and spiritual themes, both as facilitator and as provocateur. I find creating work that focuses on the male form provides a platform for expressing my personal history as a gay man, and a means of reconciling the contentious relationship LGBTQI+ people often have with their own bodies. I alternate between both stylized and representational figures; both approaches have a place in my work and often dialogue with one another. The stylized figures are putti-like forms, serving as provocateurs and influencers of human expression and emotion; the representational forms tend to be more introspective or reflective.


Aesthetically and philosophically, I am inspired by the ceramic work of the artists of the California Funk Art movement, as well as the work of the Surrealists. The material traditions of ceramics inform my process, but the “story” is what gives it meaning and purpose.  The connection of surface design to form is important, and I continue to investigate their interdependence in narrative expression. I am inspired by both natural and human-made objects that evidence signs of wear, age, and decay; these surfaces imply a sense of depth and “experience.” I often complement these surfaces with brighter colors, hard lines or patterns, and metallic or glossy surfaces. The resulting combination of organic and “hard” surfaces express a sense of both chaos and order, coexisting in a “yin yang” relationship.


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