Bruce Phillips Brings "Another Perspective" to the Johnson Center for the Arts
By Bruce Phillips
"My passion for art was realized very early. It began with a pilot art program for talented and gifted first graders - I was hooked! I discovered drafting in high school and architecture in college and my art reflects these industrial and architectural influences. Later I pursued a Masters in Fine Art (MFA) in Painting from the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) in Savannah, GA and had the wonderful opportunity to study art in Italy and France. It was during my MFA that I freely explored the use of color, mixed media and found objects and honed my assemblage skills. My early works, which merges these elements, resulted in producing pieces around several themes: performance art (dancers, music and jazz scenes, runners and hurdlers); street scenes; social commentary; found objects; and architectural abstractions.
My current works are an exploration of the interconnection between humans and the environment. It’s an examination of our relationship with both nature and man-made structures. I use circles and straight lines and my unique curvilinear mark-makings as symbols of this interconnection and use them to unify different media and elements in the same space. Color and texture, the richness of architecture and spatial relationships, and the marriage of precise perspective with the mystery of abstract all add layers of complexity that are inherent to our relationship with our physical surroundings. My photography is central to my newer works: whether it is capturing the beautiful architecture of downtown Montreal or New Orleans, or the gritty crumbling buildings and bridges of industrial cities or the amazing topography thousands of miles above Barbados, the juxtaposition of art in nature remains a captivating attraction. I want my art to evoke emotion. To create a forum for dialogue that can only come when people bring their own experience to bear and are willing to openly share and understand different perspectives and are open to new ideas.
I’ve participated in numerous group exhibitions and had solo exhibitions at Tuskegee University “Lyceum Series”, Tuskegee, AL, Huntingdon College, Montgomery, AL, the Hoover Public Library, Hoover, AL., The Legacy Museum, Tuskegee AL; Rosa Parks Museum in Montgomery, AL; Hammonds House Gallery and The Odd Fellows Building on Sweet Auburn in Atlanta, GA; and The Beech Institute, The City of Savannah Gallery and SCAD in Savannah, GA. I am honored to be the recipient of the 2016 Individual Artist Fellowship from Alabama State Council on the Arts (ASCA).
In addition to my own artwork, I’ve been fortunate to expose a new generation to the history, beauty and centrality of art in our lives. I've been the Assistant Art Professor at Tuskegee University in Alabama since 2009. I’ve previously held other positions in the Arts including: Director of the Chastain Arts Center and Gallery (City of Atlanta, Bureau of Cultural Affairs), Associate Professor of Art at Atlanta Metropolitan College, and Director of Community Outreach at SCAD.
I’m married to Dr. Kanini Rodney Phillips, an avid supporter of my work. We live and raise our son, Skye, in Hoover, Alabama."
Another Perspective, September 14-October 22, 2016
Lower Level Saunders, Chapman, and Brantley Galleries of the Johnson Center for the Arts.