Dewayne Jenkins (he/him/his)
“It makes me feel good for someone to appreciate my work. It makes me happy if they are happy.”
Chicago artist Dewayne Jenkins has been creating art since high school. Growing up and still living in the Southside of Chicago has continually presented challenges. Dewayne uses art to work through those challenges, he elaborates “I think art is a way out of the situation I am in.” Dewayne creates art at Thresholds, a community-based mental health agency in Chicago.
Not only does art give Dewayne a tool to use when he is facing a challenge, it brings him confidence and joy. “It makes me happy,” Dewayne explains, “I hope it makes other people happy. I love looking at it [art] and doing it.” Every piece that Dewayne creates begins with the same process. “I think about it first. I really do. I do research to find pictures to draw from. I draw in pencil first. Next I outline in black sharpie and then I add color.” When Dewayne adds color to his drawings, it creates an added layer of rhythm to his pieces. The patterns that are created reflect the structural rhythm found in Dewayne’s architectural subject matter.
A very grounded person, Dewayne is the proudest of his connections to his art and his family. His connection to his family has taught him that everyone needs to be treated with kindness and respect. The belief has spread to the way he thinks about his art. Only when someone appreciates Dewayne’s artwork, does he know it’s truly successful. Dewayne is excited to be a part of ArtLifting, he says “It is good for me because it’s a next level.” In his spare time, Dewayne enjoys watching sports, playing basketball and riding his bike.
Prints by Dewayne Jenkins (he/him/his)
ArtLifting champions artists impacted by disabilities and housing insecurity by connecting their art with socially-conscious customers . Learn more here.