Texas Monthly: Linda Perez Ceramics
rowing up in San Antonio, Linda Perez envied the girls who left school on Fridays saying, “See you Monday. I’m headed to the ranch.” She vowed to one day have a ranch of her own, and even after she left her home state to travel the world, teaching students in rural Zambia and conducting health care research in Peru, her longing for a piece of Texas remained. Finally, in 1993, she returned home and bought some property south of San Antonio, dubbing it the L&M Ranch (named for herself and her daughter, Maya), and soon she was selling grass-fed beef at the Pearl Farmers Market. “The land, the animals, the people—the whole ranching experience was above and beyond my actual dream,” Perez says. Then the drought of 2006 hit. Looking for a distraction from the unpleasant task of culling her herd, she signed up for a ceramics course—and instantly fell in love with clay. Several years later, facing the drought of 2011, she decided to sell her herd, but she continued to live and work on her ranch, converting a porch into a ceramics studio. Today she stays busy creating custom serving pieces for some of the top restaurants and chefs in San Antonio, including those who once purchased her beef. “Who could have known how each of these events would lead to the next?” she marvels. “It’s all been wonderful, and it’s not over yet.”
Craft Call: Linda Perez Ceramics
Have you ever known a Renaissance woman? Linda Perez is the first person who comes to mind when I hear that moniker. Linda gained local fame when her emotional Pecha Kucha talk elicited both tears and a standing ovation (the only I’ve ever witnessed) at the Center for Architecture, San Antonio. Linda is someone you meet and quickly want to get to know better. I first met Linda at the Pearl Farmer’s Market, where she was selling her grass fed beef. Many folks, local chefs included, enjoyed Linda’s beef. We would all still be supporting her business were it not for the crippling drought Texas has experienced over the past few years. But rather than letting the drought beat her, Linda directed her energy towards another passion, pottery. Lake Flato recently commissioned Linda to design and make mugs for our office. Read on to see images of Linda’s work and hear more about her inspirational life!