Jim Hoston was born in Freeport, Long Island and is a graduate of S.U.N.Y. @ Farmingdale, Pratt Institute, and the New York Academy of Art respectively. While at the Academy, he was an Andy Warhol scholarship recipient both years that he attended. A few of the noted professors that Jim studied with are Ted Schmidt, Walter Erlebacher, Xavier DeCallaty, and realist painter Jack Beal.
Jim's diploma painting "Universal Injustice" was received with rave reviews and he was featured in American Artist magazine for new emerging artist. In the same year Jim started working full-time at Marvel Comics in the famous "Bullpen". During this time, he helped put together such comics as X-men, Spiderman, Fantastic Four, The Avengers and many more. He painted comic covers and colored several books monthly as well as the Marvel Annual Reports (1993-1995). Jim has also illustrated for Scholastic, McElderry books, McGraw Hill Publishing, Macmillan Publishing, Precedence Entertainment, International Publications Ltd., Uniworld Group, Gray Advertising, the American Medical Association, the Sands Casino Hotels, and Sony Music to list a few.
In 1996, he began assisting the world-renowned artist Jeff Koons on his recent "Celebration" series of paintings. These new paintings were shown in the Venice Biennial, the Guggenheim museums in New York and Bilbao, Spain, as well as private collections. During the years from 1998 to the summer of 2000 Jim had been painting murals with Evergreene Architectural Arts, Inc. studios in New York City. Several projects he assisted on were the new Venetian Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas, Saks Fifth Avenue (Chicago), the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in Tennessee, the Flynn theatre in Vermont, the Allen County Courthouse in Indiana, as well as other venues throughout the United States. He also taught at Pratt Institute in the Illustration department and portrait painting at the New York Academy of Art during these years respectively.
In the year 2000 his work was included in the Classicism Now exhibition at the Hirschl & Adler Modern Gallery in Manhattan, the Society of Illustrators Gallery of N.Y., the Rock Foundation Gallery in NC and the Atlantic City Museum Gallery in NJ. In the April/May issue of International Artist Magazine Jim's painting of the “Accountant” was show in the Master Painting Section for the United States and in 2001 he received a full-page article on is work in the European edition of Arte' magazine from Milan, Italy.
In June of 2002 Jim was included in the well-received Black Romantic Exhibition at the Studio Museum in Harlem and in September had a Solo Exhibition in Newton, MA. In 2003 he has exhibited in Beverly Hills, CA, East Hampton, NY, The African American Museum in Hempstead, NY, and the Salmagundi Club in Manhattan for two different juried exhibitions respectively.
In 2005, Jim illustrated the Children’s book titled Shop Talk, for Scholastic, Inc., and in 2006 an early reader picture book titled John Henry. His work will be included in the “60 Anniversary, USAF 1947-2007” at the Museum of American Illustration as well as the “You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby” traveling exhibition beginning at the Museum of American Illustration in Manhattan. In 2007 he assisted in the installation and in-painted the ceiling installation for The Music Hall in Portsmouth, New Hampshire with Evergreene Architectural Arts, Inc.
In the beginning of 2008, he took part in the re-creation of the original Empire State Building lobby murals for the $500 million-dollar restoration initiative. Each panel created took 20 steps to complete and included 24 Karat Gold trim in the art deco design. It took a team of 5 artists rotating day and night shifts to complete the project in less than a year. Jim assisted in the installation and in-painting of over a dozen murals for the 35,000 square foot private Mercer Mansion in the “Secret Room” on the north shore of Long Island.
In the spring of 2008, Jim lead a team of four artists to help restore the sky region for the Gettysburg Cyclorama painting by French artist, Paul Dominique Philippoteaux, completed in 1882. The mural was restored to its original dimensions of 50’ x 397’ by the National Parks department. Evergreene Architectural Arts, Inc. was responsible for recreating over 6,400 square feet of new sky to the painting. The group worked with a team from Poland and Washington D.C. to complete the addition in less than 8 weeks.
In July of 2008, after a short trip to Ghana, Africa to do research on a slavery project, Jim traveled to Dubai, Saudi Arabia to help install and in-paint several murals for the Atlantis Hotel main floor corridors, Royal Suites, Presidential Suites and Bridge Suites overlooking the Palm Jumeirah Island. (The eight wonder of the world) His work experience was that of a supervisor, painter and project manager between other departments while on-site. He worked on that project for almost 7 weeks.
During the summer of 2009, Jim assisted the internationally recognized abstract painter Dorthea Rockburn in managing a team of 4 artists to create a mural for the American Embassy to be installed in Jamaica, West Indies. The painting was 45’ high x 17’ wide and housed and created at the Queens Museum of Art, in New York.
Recently, in March of 2012, Jim joined the restoration division of Evergreene Architectural Arts, Inc. and assisted in the in-painting portion for the restoration of the William C. MacKay murals, completed in 1935. Located in the Teddy Roosevelt Rotunda of the American Museum of Natural History, they stand over 45 feet high and 15 feet across on the sides and 60 feet across in the middle, depicting Mr. Roosevelt’s world travels and construction of the Panama Canal. The completion took over 2 years with the murals looking fresh and spectacular now.
In 2013-2015, Mr. Hoston was invited to participate in a yearly art exhibition for The Cultural Museum of African Art featuring the Eric Edwards Collection. Mr. Edwards has over 2,500 African art and artifacts in his home. Each artist was invited to do an interpretation of his collection for the Celebrate Africa- Symbols of Spirits exhibition held at the Brooklyn Borough Hall Gallery, in the first two years. In 2015, the exhibition was held at the African Burial Ground National Monument Gallery.
In December of 2013, Jim had a painting of Conan the Barbarian, that he illustrated for Marvel Comics, accepted into a year long exhibition titled Milestones: African-American’s in Comics, Pop Culture and Beyond at the Geppi Entertainment Museum in Baltimore, Maryland. The exhibition housed until December 31, 2014.
Recently, in 2015-2016, Jim had two paintings accepted in The Art League Gallery in Huntington, Long Island for a large group show titled “Black Voices” in honor of Black History month. In addition, in 2016, he took part in a group show at the United States Capital Building in Washington, D.C. for an exhibition honoring 911 first responders to support the Zadroga Act going before congress. He later participated from 2016-17 in a 911 exhibition title “Bravery and Sacrifice NYPD Heroes” sponsored by the Society of Illustrators exhibited at John Jay College of Criminal Justice until the year 2018.
In January of 2019, Jim was invited into a group show at the STAR gallery in the lower east side and exhibited one painting titled “White Heroin”, in response to the opioid epidemic affecting today’s youth. In February, Jim was one of 6 finalists chosen to exhibit a tribute painting in honor of the 100th anniversary of Paul Robeson’s graduation, at Rutgers University. His sketches and final painting were acquired by the Zimmerli Art Museum, at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey.
Currently, Mr. Hoston currently teaches at The Fashion Institute of Technology as an Adjunct Tenured Professor at their Manhattan location. He has formerly taught full-time, as an Associate Professor at The Art Institute of Boston, from the years 2000 – 2011, in Boston Massachusetts. Jim was an adjunct faculty at the New York Academy of Art Graduate School from 2010- 2012, in Tribeca, Manhattan. He originally taught Part-Time as a Visiting Assistant Professor, at Pratt Institute from 1997- 2017, on their Brooklyn campus.
Mr. Hoston maintains a studio in Brooklyn, New York.