Monday, January 7, 2008

James Converse Biggers


Born: Gastonia, NC
Education: Appalachian State University.
Degree: MA, Art Education

Mr. Biggers has developed a career as a respected educator and visual artist. He works in a variety of media, with special emphasis on painting, drawing, and monoprints. Influenced by his uncle, artist John Biggers, he has developed his own personal style in his work. Although his work often reflects his African heritage, his recent creations have incorporated themes derived from his interests in mythology and geometric patterns.

In 1977, he received a Fulbright-Hayes Grant to tour Japan as part of the North Carolina Art Teachers’ Japan Seminar at Duke University. He has worked closely with the Kennedy Center (Washington, D.C.) on several projects and has held teaching positions in public schools, colleges and a museum within the state of North Carolina. His works have been exhibited across the State. He has collaborated on several projects with his uncle, John T. Biggers, on several murals, including two 30’ tall murals in the O’Kelly Library at Winston-Salem State University, “Origins” and “Ascension.” In 1992, he again joined his uncle in the design and execution of the Hampton University Murals - Tree House and House of the Turtle - installed at the William R. and Norma B. Harvey Library at Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia.

In 1993 - 1994, James created and installed “North Carolina Belongs To Children”, a mural commissioned for the North Carolina Artworks for State Buildings Program in the North Carolina Legislative Building in Raleigh.

In 1994 – 1995, he created the piece Celebration at the Charlotte Convention Center for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Arts and Science Council. Also, he presented a one-man show, “Mythology – I Know The Way”, at the Cleveland Community College in Shelby, NC. Biggers’ work has recently been featured at a number of regional museums and art centers, including facilities in Fayetteville, Winston-Salem, and Greensboro, NC.

Mr. Biggers is an adjunct instructor at Gaston College and Cleveland Community College. He resides in Gastonia, NC with his wife Ina, two sons and four grandchildren.

Phone: 704.864-2446; E-Mail:

1 comment:

Cliffnotes said...

My name is Cliff Anderson and I'm currently Music Director for Gaston College's Radio Station 91.7fm WSGE.

When I originally enrolled here at Gaston my intention was to become an Art Instructor, although that later changed to Broadcasting, I was fortunate enough to have taken Drawing [I & II] during the evening hours with Jim Biggers. My single most treasured memory of those classes was an excercise when Jim suddenly announced to the class upon entering the classroom, that we were to create a simplistic line drawing of him in 60seconds on 'butcher paper' using whatever implement we chose with the fewest lines possible. I think Jim still has my drawing of him [and was most proud that he asked to keep it].

It was many weeks before he gave us a glimpse of his own and his uncle John Biggers stature by showing the video of the CBS 'Sunday Morning' program with Charles Kuralt which features he and John working on the mural in the NC State Office Bldg. in Raleigh. I also will never forget the time in Santa Fe, New Mexico [in an Art Gallery next door to the Georgia O'Keefe Museum mind you] when I was treated like royalty simply because of the connection to Jim Biggers and the respect I found there of the work of John.

I'm proud to have know such a great man as Jim Biggers so well and to have spent so many happy hours in his Art Class. Great men like Jim are few and far between and I'll be eternally grateful to him not only for his spark and his gift, but for sharing them with me in such a profound way.