Laura James discovered her passion for art and literature as a regular childhood visitor to the Brooklyn Public Library. The library was a safe place to be, and a place that sparked her imagination. As a painter and illustrator, James has spent three decades making images that celebrate the world of strong women in which she grew up, inspired by her African and Caribbean-American heritage.
This 2021 monthly wall calendar features: Large blocks for notes | Beautiful reproduction | Quality heavy-weight paper | Deluxe 11- by 14-inch size
About Artist Laura James
Laura James discovered her passion for art and literature as a regular childhood visitor to the Brooklyn Public Library. The library was a safe place to be, and a place that sparked her imagination. As a painter and illustrator, James has spent three decades making images that celebrate the world of strong women in which she grew up, inspired by her African- and Caribbean- American heritage. At the heart of Laura James’ work is the desire to share something with the world—a story, a feeling, confidence, beauty. “I am fascinated by the idea that people can see what I see in my mind’s eye, and blessed that I have the ability to show them,” she says.
A self-taught painter and illustrator, James has been working as an artist for almost thirty years. As a child, she spent much of her free time at the Brooklyn Public Library, the only place her parents would let her go on her own. Here she explored her passion for literature, photography, and later painting. Her African and Caribbean American heritage, and a love of stories, design, and color, are all elements that have always been present in her work. Painting in two styles she refers to as “sacred” and “secular,” James separates and combines the sacrosanct and the ordinary, and has created a diverse body of work that is her own. Originally captivated by the Ethiopian Christian Art form, James’ sacred work employs this ancient way of making icons, and expands on the collection of stories traditionally painted in this style. James is pleased to help black people see themselves in their sacred texts, in African religions and Christianity, a place where non-Anglo people have curiously been excluded in the West. To that end, James was delighted to illustrate The Book of the Gospels Lectionary, published by Liturgy Training Publications in 2000; the book is used worldwide by numerous Christian denominations and her religious art is at the forefront of the movement toward a more inclusive representation of Biblical figures.
The youngest of eight sisters, her mother a homemaker, domestic worker and nanny, James’ secular work reflects her life, a world surrounded by women. She proudly paints women-strong, majestic, and fragile — adding beauty to mundane aspects of life.
In 2014 James founded the BX200: Bronx Visual Artists Directory, a curated website for some of the Bronx’s best visual artists. In addition to showcasing portfolios from each artist, BX200.COM has expanded from being online to presenting art exhibitions and professional development workshops around New York City. James is invested in the Bronx and her community, and serves on her local Community Board. Laura James has recently worked as an Artist in Residence at The Point CDC. She created a 50-foot-long mural depicting the Hunt’s Point neighborhood in eight scenes in honor of the Bronx arts organization’s 25th anniversary.
Paintings Pictured in the 2021 Laura James Calendar
People Waiting in the Sun
Acrylic on Canvas, 14.5 by 19.5 inches
Acrylic on Canvas, 36 by 29 inches
Acrylic on Canvas, 16 by 19 inches
Painting © Laura James, 2006
Acrylic on Canvas, 11 by 12 inches
Woman by the Lake
Acrylic on Canvas, 38 by 32 inches
Acrylic on Canvas, 18 by 24 inches
People Lying on the Beach
Acrylic on Canvas, 20 by 26 inches
Acrylic on Wood, 15 by 17 inches
Acrylic on Canvas, 24 by 31.5 inches
Waiting in Harlem
Acrylic on Canvas, 18 by 19 inches
Woman in the Clouds
Acrylic on Canvas, 9 by 12 inches
Posing in Old San Juan
Acrylic on Canvas, 22 by 35 inches
© 2020 Tide-mark Press