As an artist, my mission is to reveal the immense potential within each individual by creating gestures that resonate deeply with viewers through the faces of my subjects. Inspired by Jeff Koons' insight, I believe art transcends mere objects or images; it's a transformative experience for the audience. Embracing a populist approach, I celebrate the beauty and diversity of our world, starting individuals and then with our neighborhoods and cities, as I believe they provide the fertile ground for artistic exploration. By relinquishing control, I embrace new artistic territories and collaborate with fellow artists to build a supportive creative community. In this nurturing atmosphere, collective creativity thrives, allowing us to discover and express the essence of our generation's aesthetic mood. Alongside showcasing the final results, I also emphasize displaying the artistic process, inviting viewers to partake in a holistic and engaging artistic journey.
Michael James, the artist, was born in Southampton, New York in 1971. He studied figurative painting at the Universidad Catolica De Chile School of Art in Santiago, Chile. He holds a Bachelor of Science and MBA from California Coast University, and pursued post-graduate studies in humanities and business at Harvard University/Harvard University Extension.
His artistic journey began in 1989 with an exhibit at the Parrish Art Museum in Southampton, New York. Since then, he has showcased his work in galleries across the United States and internationally including Santiago, Chile and La Serena, Chile.
Michael's talent also extends to commissioned murals and paintings displayed at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in 29 Palms, California. Furthermore, his pieces are part of the permanent collection at the Northern Waters Resort in Watersmeet, MI.
Michael James' award-winning work has been prominently featured in numerous museums and galleries nationwide. Notable venues include the Palm Springs Museum, the Kalamazoo Institute of Art, (2nd place and “People’s Choice), the Muskegon Museum of Art, and the 33 Contemporary Art Gallery in Chicago, Illinois. Most recently, his captivating pieces were showcased at the Lancaster Museum of Art and History-Cedar campus, earning an honorable mention by the jurors and curators of the show. Additionally, his paintings have found their way into esteemed private collections, further solidifying his artistic impact.
In 2020, Michael James participated in an artistic residency at the Art Center Ukiah, in conjunction with the Mendocino County Arts Council in NoCal. In 2022 Michael James first contributed to the Solidarity Street Gallery with his moving study of “Life at the Boarder” with his award winning painting “Your Huddled Masses”.
Currently, he resides and works in both the Midwest and Southern California, drawing inspiration from different landscapes and cultures.