Jim Stoner is a multi-media/disciplinary artist, skilled facilitator, and an award-winning educator. Jim has had more than 28 years of practical experience teaching and developing programs centered on marginalized people and at-risk students. Stoner is a successful visual artist and writer. He was a featured poet in The Pacific Review and has published other poems in Cultural Logic, The Awakenings Review, Educational Studies, Torrid Literature Journal, Foliate Oak Literary Magazine, The Wisconsin Review, Parenthesis Journal, Fjords Review, and in the poetry anthology Silent Voices. His artwork and poetry have been published in Jesus the Imagination: A Journal of Spiritual Revolution where his work is featured on the back cover and inside. He also has published several artworks in the journal Into the Flesh. More recently, his artworks can be found on the front and back covers of Parousia Magazine, Issue 11.
He is a former psychiatric specialist in the United States Army. He has an undergraduate degree in philosophy, a masters in creative writing, and a masters in liberal studies. For more than a decade, he was Senior Lecturer of English at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee teaching and coaching underserved students. Jim is currently seeking his Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Walden University and graduating early 2022. He is author of a forthcoming book of artwork and poems, Iterations of the Boy. He is very interested in the relationship between our intuition, imagination, artistic creation, and insight.
My art comes from deep within my soul and is unflinchingly authentic and honest. Art-making is a result of my curiosity and is a mysterious operation of the imagination, a self-expression, perhaps a catharsis. Along with an artwork, I often pair it with poetry, viewed side by side in the gallery space. I engage others by connecting written and visual forms providing a full experience for the viewer/reader.
I explore the sensuous surfaces of things, incorporating not only what is given by the senses but the most profound insight, enhancing our experience. My paintings are full of emotional and intellectual expressions like anxiety, joy, grief, depression, fear, and despair. I take my own abstract, qualitative, intra-psychic experiences and make them concrete. I juxtapose artful imagery to represent multiple aspects of paradoxical relationships found in my experiences and the material and spiritual worlds.
I am unafraid of the open road that leads partly out of the darkness and wholly back into the same source of black, a continuous life-cycle, constantly turning and churning, the universe opening and closing. My poems and artworks create intimacy, drawing the reader and viewer closer to constitute a more personal and empathetic understanding of image, us, and the natural world.
I create sublime and beautiful affects using oil pastels, pastels, chalks, markers, and pencils using color expressively and symbolically. I use bold and striking colors to create fluid and changing forms. I use daring color to convey a sense of mood and atmosphere. My palette is uniquely mine, the product of my colorblindness, and the way I perceive and paint objects. My art expresses my own emotional palette, the joys, anxieties, angst, and melancholy, and invites thought and empathy.
There is no single tradition that defines my work, though French and American Impressionism, Expressivism, Realism, and Surrealism can be found my work. Intellectually, Pragmatism, Deconstructionism, and Post-modernism are expressed in my work. Some of my artistic influences are Vermeer, Claude Monet, van Gogh, Lucian Freud, Kandinsky, Picasso, Matisse, Rubens, Leonid Afremov, Gustav Klimt, Salvador Dali, Andy Warhol, and Munch.
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Art must be deeply felt...