Artist Bio & Statement


I am a visual artist living in Rock Hill, South Carolina. Born in Fort Hood, Texas, I grew up in Concord, North Carolina.  After earning an MA in Applied Art History and an MFA in Painting from the University of South Carolina in 1980, I served on the faculties of Arkansas College (now Lyon College) in Batesville, Arkansas and Barry University in Miami, Florida.  In 1985 I returned to North Carolina to direct the Waterworks Visual Arts Center in Salisbury.  I became the first director of Winthrop University Galleries in Rock Hill in 1990. From 2007 to 2017 I served as chair of Winthrop’s Department of Fine Arts.  I continue to create my own work, curate, and engage in collaborative public art projects.

I have an abiding curatorial interest in the work of self-taught artists, from my first exhibition Worth Keeping: Found Artists of the Carolinas (1980) to New South Old South Somewhere In Between for Winthrop (1995) and the Levine Museum of the New South (2003).  Currently I am researching and cataloging the work of self-taught South Carolina artist Gene Merritt (1936-2015) who exhibited at the Collection de l’Art Brut in 1998 and has received international attention for the singular visual voice of his methodical yet intuitive drawing.

As an artist, I typically work in series with limitations of size, color and imagery.  I use recurring shapes such as triangles and figurative elements of houses and boats. Typical media are acrylic on canvas and on paper. Although I use common graphic strategies like mechanical drawing, silhouette, and sgraffito, the process is about making something I have never seen before. The work is a conversation between my hands and my eyes. I draw with paint rather than paint with paint.  

The 2017 exhibition Tom Stanley: Scratching the Surface at the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art featured my work from 2004 to the present, emphasizing its serial nature and reliance upon drawing techniques.  

For complete CV click here.