Florida School of the Arts presents artist Alfred Phillips

Swamp Monster painting

As part of the visiting artist series, Florida School of the Arts will present a gallery exhibition for Gainesville-based artist Alfred Phillips.  The exhibit will open with a reception on Thursday, March 12 at 7:00 p.m. in the Fine Arts Gallery located on St. Johns River State College’s Palatka campus.    The exhibit will be on display through April 13.   Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and during Main Stage performances.  Gallery exhibits are free and open to the public.

Phillips’s exhibition is titled Urban Grit and More.  Preferring to paint with fast-drying acrylics rather than oils, the artist said he paints realistically, but never to the point of photorealism, often with a narrative theme.  “I might incorporate almost abstract-like areas, with drips and splatters, and shapes and angles, even in my most detailed paintings,” Phillips said, adding, “Then I might focus extreme detail in certain areas of the canvas to draw the eye and bring the viewer closer to the painting.”   Phillips said the exhibit will continue his theme of Urban Grit, but he has not limited himself, including rural aspects as well.     

Educated at Louisville, Kentucky’s Art Center School, Phillips’s successful career in commercial art includes stints at ad agencies as well as his own graphics design firm, which he closed in 2003 and relocated to Fort Lauderdale to pursue a life-long dream of opening his own painting studio.  He has since received more than a dozen Best in Show awards for his works, including the prestigious “Art Florida” top award.   A resident of Gainesville since 2013, Phillips actively serves on the board of the Gainesville Fine Arts Association.  His pieces can be found at the Rossetti Fine Art Gallery in Fort Lauderdale as well as in collections throughout the United States and internationally.      

Florida School of the Arts is part of the academic and administrative structure of SJR State and awards the two-year associate degree in the following areas of study:  acting, dance performance, musical theater, stage management, theater technology, graphic design and studio art.  The School serves the entire state of Florida.  Admission is based on an audition or portfolio review, an interview with the faculty and admission to SJR State.

Students produce and perform in approximately four visual arts exhibitions and 10 performances each year. For more information about Florida School of the Arts call (386) 312-4300 or visit online at



“Swamp Monster,” a 48” x 36” acrylic by Gainesville-based artist Alfred Phillips.  Phillips’s works will be displayed in an exhibit titled “Urban Grit and More” at the Florida School of the Arts Main Gallery located on the Palatka campus of St. Johns River State College.   An opening reception will be held Thursday, March 12 at 7:00 p.m.  The exhibit will be on display through April 13. 

“Let’s Head Back,” an 18” x 24” acrylic by Gainesville-based artist Alfred Phillips.  The painting recently won Best in Show at the Gainesville Fine Arts Association Holiday Exhibit at the Thomas Center.