James Koskinas

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Driven by a lifelong creative urge, Koskinas’ primary theme is the figure, part of his pursuit to know the human condition. Subjects with piercing gazes, riders in motion, and angels are rendered in bold lush colors and spontaneous compositions that are painted automatically to connect with the subconscious.

Be sure to view James' archive page.

James Koskinas


"I paint because I must. I have this inner creative urge that has guided me my whole life. It's just something I have to do."


JAMES KOSKINAS was born in Terra Haute, Indiana in 1947. While he was still quite young, his family moved to Scottsdale, AZ. There, the young Jamie spent many hours drawing pictures of the assorted characters who frequented his father's laundry business: mountain men, Indians, traders... Scottsdale was a little wild back then.

In addition to drawing and painting, Koskinas loves travel and adventure, inner urgings that have driven him since childhood. At the age of 5, he ran away to join a circus that had come to town. Intercepted by his mother and returned to his drawing materials, he was content to create art and act in plays and skits, traveling the inner planes of his imagination until he reached adulthood.

As a young man, Koskinas joined the Navy to see the world. He explored and adventured in the Far East, Asia and Japan. In a way, Koskinas also achieved his childhood dream to join the circus; in the late 1970's, he became an actor and dancer with the Constantin Stanislavski Theatre of the West. Frequent Improvisation classes with that troupe fostered boldness and spontaneity, qualities which are quite evident today in his paintings.

Later travels took him to the Caribbean, the pyramids of the Yucatan, and Peaks Island, Maine. Along the way, Koskinas learned to build and repair sailboats and houses. In the 1980s, he even owned his own construction company. All this experience furthered Koskinas' passion for working with his hands, and the daily ritual of creating.

Between travels and adventures, he studied art at the California College of Arts & Crafts and Cabrillo College. He also pursued independent art studies with Burridge, and was fortunate to spend a year with sculptor / painter Rob Winston as his mentor. Koskinas sees this time with Winston as seminal, saying, "He forced me to see, and to think, and he fostered my creative, independent spirit."

Artistically, Koskinas admires the bold, lush colors of Gaugin, Van Gogh, Max Beckman, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner and, of course, Picasso. Their work, along with all the influences cited above, plus his own storehouse of vast and varied life experiences, continues to inspire his creative expression.

Koskinas' paintings are in many private collections throughout North America.

Attended California College of Arts and Crafts [art studies],
University of California, Irvine [creative writing studies],
Lesley College [art therapy studies]
Further art and design studies with California artists Robert Burridge and Bob Winston, and New Mexico artist Dean Howell

selected exhibitions
2018 June,  Group show, Jennifer Perlmutter Gallery, Lafayette, CA
2017 March,  Two person show, Jennifer Perlmutter Gallery, Lafayette, CA
2016 February,  Two person show at Louise Hopkins Underwood Center for the Arts, Lubbock, TX
2014 May,  Group show, Jay Etkin Gallery, Memphis, TN
2012 April,  Group show, Muse Fine Art, Denver, CO
2011 November,  Group Show, Arlington Museum of Art, Arlington, TX
2011 January,  Group show, Matrix Arts, Santa Fe, NM
2010 October,  Group show, Matrix Arts, Santa Fe, NM
2008-2010  Various group shows at Selby Fleetwood Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2007 October,  Group show, Marziart, Hamburg, Germany
2006 October,  Group show, New Editions Gallery, Lexington, KY
2006 June,  Two person show, Farrell-Fischoff Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2005 November,  Solo show, Farrell-Fischoff Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2005 May,  Group show, Farrell-Fischoff Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2005 April,  Two person show, New Editions Gallery, Lexington, KY
2005 March,  Emerging Artists show, Scottsdale, AZ
2005 January-March,  Group show, Farrell-Fischoff Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2004 November,  Two person show, SKF Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2004 April,  Solo Show, James Hart Exhibition Space, Santa Fe, NM
2003 October,  Group Show, El Museo Cultural, Santa Fe, NM
2003 February,  Solo show, Koskinas Art, Santa Fe, NM