SAN ANGELO, Texas (AP) — In 1971, Roger Allen was teaching art at San Angelo Central High School and looking for a piece of property where he could live cheaply, make pottery and not worry about his studio being torn down by landlords with development dreams.
The Houston Chronicle reports what he found after a year or so of looking was a weed-choked 3-acre plot on the nondescript northeastern edge of town. The property, including nine dilapidated, junk-filled buildings, had been a poultry-processing operation before the big boys, Pilgrim’s Pride and Perdue Farms, drove local producers out of business. Allen and two friends bought it for $25,000.
More than four decades later, the West Texas potter with the graying rat-tail and bushy goatee is still making superb pieces — his work is in museums and galleries around the country — and the old chicken plant has become the Art Institute of San Angelo. More commonly known as the Chicken Farm, it’s a remarkable complex of studios and gallery spaces,…
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