W. James Taylor
Chalk Pastel Painter, Publisher & Musician
I am a product of the turbulent and emotion-packed 1960’s, first only a street kid in the Lonsdale Homes Community of North Knoxville, then a rock-and-roll drummer in a regionally famous funk band ‘Freddy and the Flamingo’s’ opening for such acts as Funkadelic, Bill Withers, Rufus Thomas, and Mary Wells, just to name a few. When my life was my Art and Music, sporting bigger than real Afro hair and fur-trimmed knee-high boots, rocking Knoxville’s world. I later worked as a draftsman for TVA (Tennessee Valley Authority), and then I joined the Knoxville Police Department.
A few years later, when the artistic urge was too strong to deny, I relocated to Washington, D.C., establishing Geneva Galleries Inc.
Vicissitude, the core expression of my artistic exploration, Is based on an abstract geometrical triptych expressing what I felt and experienced as a young man in the south of the 1960’s with the challenges of integration and trying to interpret the stories my father Eldred Libby Taylor told me about his childhood in Georgia. The idea for the three panels came to me over a six-year period, they represent the Past, Present, and Future of the black race, associated with each panel, are paintings and drawings I designed using Pencil and chalk pastel to represent that time in our vast history. It is my hope to engage my audience with subliminal imagery to tell the stories I feel should be preserved as a reflection of who we are and the brevity of our ancestral sacrifice and struggle for freedom and equality.