Archives of American Art
PO Box 37012
Victor Building, Room 2200, MRC 937
Washington, DC 20013-7012
Sound recording: 5 cassettes (5 hr.) : analog.
An interview of Bob Winston conducted by Suzanne Baizerman for the Archives of American Art at the artist's home in Concord, Calif., on July 31, Aug. 7 and 15, Sept. 18, and Oct. 10, 2002. Winston speaks of his early childhood and running away from home at 19 months old, being found in a garage and building things ever since; the numerous operations he had as a child; his dyslexia and how he got through college; the death of his father and move to Berkeley, Calif.; teaching at Berkeley High school; 17 years teaching at California College of Arts and Crafts (1942-1959) and the growth of the school throughout that time period; moving to Arizona and teaching lost wax casting in an abandoned supermarket; his inventions, Win-Ox, an oxidizer, and Bubble-Be-Gone, a cleaner; his latest sale of Win-Ox; his title as “San Francisco's Most Professional Eccentric;” and finding that a lot of the people he teaches do not find the “magic” that he does in jewelry work. Winston then discusses his current studio layout in an former hospital building; his machines and different work rooms; his chemistry table, where he makes his Win-Ox solution; his collection; how he's accomplished so much despite his dyslexia; the Hunt brothers and how they made the price of gold drop; living from Art Festival to Festival on the road in his Jeep; his mentors John Haley and Chiura Obata; and his bike, which he still rides. Winston also recalls Aileen Webb, Margaret DePatta, Gene Bielawski, Mark Hopkins, Karl Kasten and others.