Jerrell Gibbs ’20 (LeRoy E. Hoffberger School of Painting MFA) chosen as award winner by American Academy of Arts and Letters

Jerrell Gibbs ’20 (LeRoy E. Hoffberger School of Painting MFA) was announced as one of 18 artists to receive an Art Reward from the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2021.

The total of $ 500,000 in art awards and purchases honors established and emerging artists. The winners were selected from a group of 125 artists who had been invited to submit work. Gibbs received the Rosenthal Family Foundation Award in Art, which earns a young, respected painter $ 10,000.

Gibbs traces family memories and examines the origins of his own life by depicting intimate and instantly joyful moments. Gibbs affirms the multifaceted experience of the Afro-American diaspora and transports the viewer into a haunting experience, the realm of his childhood.

Growing up in Baltimore influenced his view of socioeconomics, body politics, race, economic differences and their mutual influence. Through his figurative portraits, Gibbs enlivens banal depictions of black identity by depicting empathy and inviting the possibility of a spiritual connection. The works are transformed from small polaroids into life-size paintings.

“Winning the American Academy Award is a great feeling,” said Gibbs. “More than anything else, I have to say that winning the award motivated me to keep working hard and perfect my craft. I’m so grateful, now it’s time to get back to work! “

He has exhibited at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum, the Galleries at CCBC, and the Gallery at Howard University. His work is in the permanent collection of the Columbus Museum of Art. Gibbs is represented by the Mariane Ibrahim Gallery.

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