Sonya Yong James is a sculptor and multi-media artist whose work for the past several years has focused on the exploration of the idea of physical devotion and ritual experienced through the process of repetitive labor intensive making. The sculptures utilize animal hair, including sheep wool and horse hair. Her current work is focused on the duality of form representing opposing sensations and active emotional tensions. This is shown by contrasting visual textures such as gentleness and violence, animal and human, and beauty and the abject. She is influenced by the landscapes of the South, personal narrative, and the history of mourning in America.

James was born in Knoxville, Tennessee and raised in Atlanta, Georgia. She received a BFA in Printmaking from Georgia State University in 2000 where she focused on etching and sculpture. James has exhibited nationally for the past twenty years and has been the recipient of several grants, awards, and residencies. In 2013, she curated an exhibition for the Hudgens Center for the Arts entitled Repetition and Ritual: New Sculpture in Fiber that travelled to the Minnesota Museum of American Art. She is currently in a traveling exhibit originating at the Muskegon Museum of Art that is considered an international survey of innovators in the field entitled Extreme Fibers: Textile Icons and the New Edge.

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