PETER WAYNE LEWIS was born in Kingston, Jamaica, of a typical Jamaican parentage of African and European extract. He immigrated to Sacramento, California with his parents in 1962, where he and the family became part of the African-American community of Sacramento, while also suffering the perception of being outsiders. Peter became an American citizen in 1983. He received his M.A. in Painting from San Jose State University in California and was a tenured Professor of Painting at Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston for 25 years, including a stint as Chairman of the Department. He maintains an ambitious studio practice, splitting his time between the New York Metro area and Beijing, China, where he is also the Director of Oasis Gallery- Beijing.
Peter’s influences are as global as his DNA, ranging from his early attraction to Japanese prints to a lifelong interest in music, the legacy of his jazz-pianist father to the eclectic cultural surroundings of the Caribbean and California. More recently, he has become intrigued by theoretical cosmology and quantum physics, especially string theory, a concept which has pushed his work into new territory, notably in the series Buddha Plays Monk. His expansive abstract language negotiates a balance between spontaneity and precise control, between structure and chaos, between light and dark and color and no color – an amalgam that offers an intense intellectual and visual experience.
Peter has exhibited extensively in the US, Africa, Caribbean, Europe, and Asia. Recent solo exhibitions – at The Delaware Contemporary (2019-2020) in Wilmington, DE; at UCCA – Ullens Center of Contemporary Art in Beijing (curated by Philip Tinari, 2016); and MOCA-North Miami (2015) as well as gallery exhibitions on three continents – include a survey of paintings produced in his studio in Beijing. His works are in numerous public and private collections in the U.S. and abroad.