William Catling, MFA

Professor, Chair, Department of Art, Interim Chair, Department of Design

Phone: (626) 815-6000, Ext. 3724
Office Location: Art Center, Room 2
Photo of William Catling, MFA


William Catling, MFA, was born in San Francisco and grew up in the Bay Area. He decided at an early age that art was what he wanted to do for life. Catling taught high school for 10 years, then moved to Southern California to begin teaching at APU in 1991. As an artist, he attempts to address the loss of our natural sense of being human—that is, our deeply intuitive sense of ourselves. He believes we have become disconnected from the natural rhythms of life.

The figures Catling makes are rough, cracked, aged, reflecting suffering and the internal capacity to connect to others outside oneself. Such suffering can evoke the viewer’s empathy and self-transcendence. Viewers can embrace the condition of the figures, thus engaging themselves in the process of reconnecting by joining in the transcendent element of the work. The work does not eliminate the body’s suffering, but presents it as a condition for spiritual uplift.


  • MFA, Sculpture, California State University, Fullerton
  • MA, California State University, San Francisco
  • BA, California State University, San Francisco

Academic Areas

  • School of Visual and Performing Arts (College of the Arts)
    • Department of Design
    • Department of Art


  • 20th Century/Contemporary Art
  • Art and Faith Integrations
  • Ceramics
  • Contemporary Sculpture
  • Gallery Preparation
  • Public Mural Projects

Courses Taught

  • ART 205 – Ceramics I
  • ART 206 – Ceramics II
  • ART 305 – Ceramics III
  • ART 306 – Ceramics IV
  • ART 406 – Ceramic Studio Processes
  • ART 495 – Special Topics in Art: Art and Faith
  • ART 501 – Integration: Theory and Practice I
  • ART 601 – Integration: Theory and Practice III