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Spiva Center for the Arts Joplin MO

Jim Bray is longtime friend of Spiva and Joplin. Recent paintings depict the “magnificent diagonals” of the Colorado mining sites he captures, including the falling timbers, the angles of the mountainous horizon line, and the textures and patterns of the landscape surfaces.


Jim has established an international reputation with his works in painting and collage. Having traveled extensively, Jim has also taught and exhibited in Japan and Scandinavia, where he has developed a following based at the Mullsjo, Folkhogskola, or people’s college, in Mullsjo, Sweden. He has also taught workshops at the Folkuniversity in Jonkoping, Sweden.
One of his collage pieces, begun in Japan, completed in the United States, and sold during a tour of galleries in Belgium and Germany exemplifies his international experience. His work is also influenced by regular visits to the American Southwest renewing impressions from his childhood in Oklahoma and his interest in the ‘vanishing landscape’ of rural America.
As a watercolor artist, Jim has signature status with the Kansas Watercolor Society and National Watercolor Oklahoma, and has won numerous First place and Best of Show awards in national competitions. His most recent Best of Show award was at the Spiva membership show in Joplin, Missouri. Jim’s graphic design work repeatedly won top honors at national CASE conferences throughout the United States. Also, during his career at Phillips University, his design group won several sweepstakes awards in national competitions
Currently retired, Jim was head of the Art department at Missouri Southern State University for 10 years, and taught courses in watercolor, life drawing, painting and typography. He also taught Scandinavian Art History as part of the Summer in Sweden program, which he helped initiate in 1992.

Jim Bray’s paintings and collages are currently shown in Joplin, Missouri, Nashville, Tennessee, and Galleri VeBoa, in Mullsjo, Sweden. His work is included in many private collections in the United States, Scandinavia and Japan.

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