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James Gibson

James Gibson

Untitled Set of Florida Landscapes
Set of Florida Landscapes
Oil on canvas board, 2007
H: 19 ¼” W: 16 ¼”
Acquired from the artist in 2008

James Gibson grew up in Fort Pierce, where he was friends with Alfred Hair. After graduating high school, Gibson studied biology at Tennessee State for three years, until he had to withdraw from college for financial reasons. When he returned to Fort Pierce, Alfred Hair taught him how to paint landscapes. The two men painted together, challenging and motivating each other in friendly competition. They then headed off on the highway in different directions to sell their paintings.

From the beginning, Gibson was an able and charming salesman, catering to the tourist trade. In the winter, he used warm orange colors to sell to people who would return to cold northern climes, then turn to cool blues and grays in the summertime. From his early days with Hair, Gibson continuously painted landscapes for a living. His patrons included former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, singer Gladys Knight, and filmmaker Steven Spielberg. In addition to being an award-winning artist, Gibson was a generous philanthropist who gave back to his community.