Creative visual artist Rhonda Gray began painting after she graduated from University
of Northern Iowa with a Bachelors degree in History Education in May 2002.
After fasting and praying, she was inspired by God to paint and discovered her artistic gift. She employs oils, acrylics, sand, fabrics, and molding compounds to celebrate beauty, culture and spirit. Ms. Gray’s work can be found in private collections in several countries such as England, France, Sweden, Canada, Brazil, Poland, Russia, and Germany, as well as across the United States. In 2008, she was the selected featured artist at the 30th Annual Chicago Jazz Festival where one of her paintings, “Mabel and the Music Makers,” was used as the official design image. Her work has been exhibited in many venues including juried art shows and galleries such as DuSable Museum, University of Illinois- Chicago, South Shore Cultural Center, Millennium Park, Gallery Guichard, Griffin Gallery, Grant Park, Zhou B Art Center, ETA Theater, Gallery at Oakwood Shores and the Drake Hotel. Her work has been selected for BET and is also in a few celebrity private collections. Rhonda is a member of the Chicago Artist Coalition and American Society of Artists. She has done work with Habitat for Humanity, Sickle Cell Disease Association, Gallery 37, and Kaleidoscope, Inc. She currently resides in the historic Bronzeville neighborhood in Chicago, IL, is a full time artist and completed her first year of graduate school May 2010.
I have always had a strong passion for fine arts. I wrote poetry, sang in church, acted in plays, but it was not until the age of 22 that I was inspired by God to paint. I was instantly obsessed with the art form and it became a freeing creative expression. As a historian and teacher, painting is my catalyst to communicate pertinent messages to the world. A painting can speak volumes and the canvas is a microphone for me to raise the voice of my soul. I want my work to provoke critical thought and stimulate liberating dialogue while inviting the viewer to visually experience passion, culture, history, love, beauty, truth, wisdom, and empowerment.
"As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." - Marianne Williamson