|Dates & places of birth and death||
b. 1926 Butte, MT
d. 2007 Missoula, MT
Rudy Autio (American, 1926-2007)
Born in Butte, Montana, Autio served for two years in the Navy during World War II. Following the war, he studied art at Montana State University in Bozeman on the GI Bill. There he met Peter Voulkos. In 1952, the two became the founding resident artists at the Archie Bray Foundation for the Ceramic Arts. Autio remained at the Bray until 1957, when he moved to Missoula to found the ceramics department at The University of Montana. He served as head of the department and taught for twenty-eight years.
Autio received a Tiffany Award in Crafts in 1963, the American Ceramic Society Art Award in 1978, and a National Endowment for the Arts grant in 1980. In 1981, he was the first recipient of the Montana Governor's Arts Award. He was a Fellow of the American Crafts Council, Honorary Member of the National Council of Education in the Ceramic Arts (NCECA), and recipient of the American Craftsman's Gold Medal Award in 1999. BR
While Autio's best known work is figurative ceramic vessels, he has worked in a variety of materials and other media. In addition to commissions in ceramic relief and tile murals, he has worked in bronze, concrete, glass, fabricated metal sculpture, and design of colorful Rya tapestries. Most of these were commissioned for public buildings in the Northwest and one is in Finland.