Department of Art
United States of America
James Phillips, M.F.A. is an Associate Professor in the Department of Arts. The pursuit of his ancestral heritage is the heartbeat of Phillips’ art. The link between art and culture is translucent. Phillips draws his audience into both the spiritual and political realm of his work, emphasizing an integral part of African and African-American tradition and culture through his use of icons and color. His art speaks of African mythology and storytelling as evidenced in African-American quilting – whose patterns and designs are deeply rooted in Africa. Phillips’ work is aesthetic and political, visual and musical, it defines and defends. Phillips is not a painter only because he is painting; his paintings are inseparable from his consciousness and identity as an African-American in the United States.