About Brittany James
Brittany James graduated from Montclair State University with a BFA degree concentrated in oil painting in 2009 and has been a full-time artist and muralist ever since. As a Jersey Shore native, James began painting in Island Heights in 1995 with mentor Elaine Sgambati. In addition to painting, James teaches art classes for children and teens at Inspired Minds Fine Art School in Lincroft and Brielle. She also teaches painting and life drawing classes for adults at art629 Gallery and runs an open studio for local artists. She is experience in oil painting, acrylic murals, performance art, charcoal drawing, pastel, life drawing, printmaking, and sculpture.
James has painted live on stage at the State Theater in New Brunswick, Paramount Theater in Asbury Park, and Count Basie Theater in Red Bank during Glen Burtnik’s British Invasion and Summer of Love shows. She has been a muralist and featured artist for the Asbury Underground Art & Music Crawl, and has shown her work in several New Jersey galleries including Torche Gallery and Belmar Arts Center in Belmar, art629 Gallery and Parlor Gallery in Asbury Park, and George Segal Gallery in Montclair.
2019 “Moon Phases”, Solo Exhibition at Wild Eye, Red Bank, NJ
2019 “Square Pegs”, Group Exhibition at Parlor Gallery, Asbury Park NJ
2018 “Portraits”, Group Exhibition at art629 Gallery, Asbury Park, NJ
2018 “Shore Enough”,Group Exhibition at Local Vision Fine Art Gallery, Red Bank, NJ
2018 “Spring Fever”, Group Exhibition at Local Vision Fine Art Gallery, Red Bank, NJ
2018 “Escapism”, Solo Exhbition,Belmar Arts Center, Belmar, NJ
2017 “Metamorphosis”, Art629 Exhibit with Patrick Schiavino, Asbury Park, NJ
2016 “Return of Saturn”, Solo Exhibition,Concrete Gallery, Red Bank NJ
2016 “The Locals”, Group Exhibition at Art629 Gallery, Asbury Park, NJ
2015 Spring Group Exhibition,Torche Gallery, Belmar, NJ
2014 “The Locals”, Group Exhibition at Art629 Gallery, Asbury Park, NJ
2014 Fall Group Exhibition,Torche Gallery, Belmar, NJ2013 Summer Group Exhibition, Torche Gallery, Belmar, NJ
2011 “27: A Musical Art Show”, Solo Exhibition,CoWerks Gallery, Asbury Park, NJ
2009 BFA Group Exhibition, George Segal Gallery, Montclair, NJ
2008 Solo Exhibition, “Something Pretty” Gallery 3.0, Montclair, NJ
-Painting and Life Drawing Instructor/Curator at Art629 Gallery, Asbury Park NJ 2014
-Present-Art Teacher at Inspired Minds Fine Art School, Lincroft NJ, 2012
-Present-Art Teacher at Mountz School, Spring Lake NJ 2017
-Present-Private School Art Teacher at WeExcel LLC, Toms River NJ, 2010-2012
-Art Teacher at West Hudson Council for the Arts, Kearney NJ, 2008-2009
-Manager of Galeria Classica, Spring Lake NJ, 2008-2010
All of James’ paintings are derived from a combination of photo references and imagined scenes to create surreal images. Most of her paintings are inspired by the relationships between women and nature, astronomy, and astrology.
James’ philosophy is that artists are seekers, always trying to understand the underlying, hidden truths in the world around us. Nothing is exactly as it seems and reality is often hidden behind illusions. She has represented this theme in many of her paintings which are often inspired by dreams, memories, and life experiences.
She is currently focused on the struggle some women face trying to find the delicate balance between wanting to be feminine and domestic, versus wild and free, and trying to be both at the same time. As a further emphasis on the relationship between reality and illusion, she often uses a technique of dripping many layers of turpentine mixed with oil paint down the canvas before adding the images on top. This creates a break in the realism of the painting.
James says, “The healing therapy of art-making and self-expression has been very important to me throughout my life as well, and is something I continue to share with others through painting. I could not be who I am today without the ability and freedom to channel my thoughts onto a canvas. Whether it be through creating or teaching, I want to continue to make an impact on others’ lives through art. That makes me feel like I am doing my job as an artist.”