Meet the Artist: Spectrum Miami Spotlight Artist Scott Jeffries
Q: Introduce yourself — who you are and what your vision as an artist is?
A: My name is Scott Jeffries. I am a painter and sculptor based in Lake Worth Florida. My work is vibrant and joyful filled with color and energy. My work is an irreverent expression of my subconscious, an invitation to my brain. My vivid imagination was manifested through doodles as a child to the works I am presently doing today. My work is a mirror of the person standing before it and provides a reflection of the present mood.
Q: What is your background?
A: I was born in New York City in 1967. Raised outside of Philadelphia, I was an elite athlete, a swimmer, who competed at a national level as was a Division 1 All-American in college. After college, I went to law school and became a litigation attorney. My life changed in 2006 when I became clean and sober from an insane crack and heroin addiction. Through all of this, I was always doodling and painting. Inspiration came from my grandmother who was a painter. I continue her legacy the best that I can
Q: What is your work philosophy and how does that impact your work?
A: My philosophy is that it’s ok to paint outside the lines. I think a lot of artists are hampered by perfectionism. This is not my problem. After I got sober, I embraced an attitude of gratitude because the reality is that I should be dead. I don’t spend time worrying if something in my art may not appear “perfect” to someone else. My art is the embodiment of freedom. Freedom from worry and Judgment. I know that not every single person will love my work, and that is just fine with me.
Q: What artist(s) inspire you?
A: I am really attracted to the COBRA art movement artists like Karl Appel. The primitive nature of those artists inspires me as someone who is self-taught. I didn’t go to art school so I don’t follow specific rules or conventions when I paint. I just paint. I also love Jean Dubuffet, the collages of Romare Bearden, and Purvis Young, and the social commentary provided by the artist Titus Kaphar. I love that African American Artists are part of the art landscape that people are talking about.
Q: What is the best advice you’ve received?
A: Be yourself. Have Fun. Stop Complaining. Work Hard. Be on Time. Floss.
Q: When you are not working, where can we find you?
A: I’m heavily involved in the recovery community. I teach meditation and art to people in rehab that are dealing with mental health and addiction issues. I exercise on a regular basis. I have a studio where other artists can hang out and paint which is a gift. I love to cook and eat with friends and family. It’s a full life.
Q: What does exhibiting at Spectrum Miami 2022 mean to you?
A: First, I’m honored. I had a few paintings at Spectrum 2017 with Irreversible Projects which was amazing. To have a SOLO Booth is almost mind-boggling along with verification and motivation that the momentum that has been building for the past few years is real. I am beyond excited to meet new people, connect with other artists specifically, and just have a good time. The Artist’s life is not always easy but it’s certainly worth it.