Steven Allen was born in 1964 and grew up in a small town, Draper, Utah. After graduating high school, he attended Utah Technical College in Orem to study precision machining. He supported himself as a machinist and continued to pursue higher education, studying engineering, accounting and business. After many years of education Steve finally decided he must follow his passion and completed a BA and an MFA at San Francisco State University.
Steve currently lives and works in San Francisco, California where he opened SMAart Gallery & Studio in San Francisco in September, 2012. The main gallery focuses on art from the greater ceramic community while the community gallery focuses on art made by artist at SMAart. The studio offers rental space, a community studio and ceramic classes. While the center primarily caters to ceramic artists, artists of every media are welcome. Steve opened SMAart to fulfill a longtime dream of having a gallery, a place to teach art to the community, and a place to create art in a creative open environment surrounded by other inspiring artists. He now works full time managing SMAart, doing his artwork and teaching classes.
Some of the artists that have influenced Steve include: Jun Kaneko, Peter Voulkos, Viola Frey, Richard Shaw and Robert Hudson. Shadows of form, texture, color, and working methods of these artists can be found in much of Steve’s work tempered by the hand of a machinist. He first learned pottery at the Salt Lake Art Center with Lee Erickson and then studied sculpting techniques at San Francisco State from David Kuraoka and Jeff Downing. The potter’s wheel is still his favorite tool, but he now take these forms off the wheel, altering them, adding other thrown and altered components to create the final sculpture. Steve’s machining background and the Steampunk subculture are major influence in his recent works featured in the 2013 CAA exhibit.
Steve’s ceramic sculpture can be found in many private and permanent collections including the de Young Museum, Ceramics Research Center, Mission Clay Products, Gladding McBean, Dolan Law Firm and the Lincoln and Salinas Public Libraries. He is an award-winning sculptor and has shown his work nationally and internationally. He creates a variety of artwork from complex sculptural assemblages to functional pottery.