See master N.C. potter's work in Raleigh

The works of well-known Seagrove potter Ben Owen III are on display at the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences Nature Art Gallery in Raleigh.

Third-generation potter Owen has been working in the family business since age 13. In high school he began using the glazes and craft traditions of his grandfather, who had been influenced by the Asian pottery he had seen in museum collections.

His influences

Owen's style evolved as he traveled the U.S., Europe, China, Australia and New Zealand to learn more about the craft. He has tried to remain true to his family's traditions, and the results are distinctly North Carolinian.

He's a star

The Owen name is familiar among pottery lovers in this state. But Owen has also been commissioned to do pottery for Ronald Reagan, Elizabeth Taylor, Perry Como, Bob Hope, Tom Selleck and Arnold Palmer.

The University of North Carolina recently commissioned him to create a piece for James Taylor, as part of the musician's lifetime achievement award.

He's been collected and exhibited throughout the state, and at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts and the Dallas Museum of Art.

A gallery at the science museum?

The Nature Art Gallery is on the top floor of the museum store. All exhibited work is for sale.