Born in East Texas in 1943, James Surls graduated from Sam Houston State Teachers College (now Sam Houston State University) in 1966 and received his MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1968. He taught at Southern Methodist University in Dallas from 1969 to 1976 before moving to Splendora, Texas. There he lived with his wife, Charmaine Locke, for over twenty years. They relocated to the Roaring Fork Valley of Colorado in 1997.
Surls is a distinguished sculptor working with bronze, steel, and wood. The artist turns to his mind’s eye to visualize the universe. Straddling the physicality of the landscape around him in which he inhabits with the spirituality of the space within him, Surls is an artist across the universe divide creating the world around us in a manner that expresses his freedom from the physical.
His first exhibition in Utah, SUMA will feature more than 50 works of art created after 2006, with some work as recent as 2018.