Welcome to the Art&Seek Artist Spotlight. Every Thursday we’ll explore the personal journey of a different North Texas creative. As it grows, artandseek.org/spotlight should ultimately paint a collective portrait of our artistic community. Enjoy, and let us know what you think.
Clare Floyd DeVries has never taken a single class in theater. Ever. Not even ‘Intro to Acting.’ Yet she’s North Texas’ most prolific set designer.
In 16 years, DeVries has designed more than 200 shows – for stage companies from Fort Worth’s Casa Mañana and the Undermain in Deep Ellum to WaterTower Theatre in Addison. She seems to be everywhere, and sometimes, repeatedly: In one season alone, DeVries designed fourteen sets. Right now, she’s designing back-to-back productions for Circle Theatre.
It helps that DeVries considers all this great fun because designing theater sets, even 14 in a year, simply doesn’t pay the bills. Very few professional set designers make a full-time living at it, even on Broadway. Most of them teach on the side or run some other, independent firm.
DeVries is an architect — and officially remains one. She’s designed residences, civic buildings, restaurants and “a lot of bars,” she says proudly, “I can design you a bar.”