IAIA - Institute of American Indian Arts

Brenda Kingery, Vice-Chair

Born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Brenda Kingery is a voting member of the Chickasaw Nation, and seeks to put her life on canvas. Married to husband Tom, she raised two children while getting her BFA degree in fine arts and art history at the University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma.

Brenda and Tom were transferred to Okinawa in 1968. Kingery spent seven years in Okinawa, and attended graduate school at Ryukyuu University. After returning to the United States, she enrolled in graduate school at the University of Oklahoma, eventually writing her thesis on “The Origins and Influences of Ryukyuan Folk Art.” After receiving her MA in Arts (Painting and Art History), she returned to Okinawa to teach drawing, painting and Okinawan cultural history at the University of Maryland Far East Division, then traveled extensively in Asia, soaking up even more culture.

Brenda and Tom settled in San Antonio, Texas, where Brenda taught at San Antonio College, while continuing her painting career. In 1993 Brenda was selected as the San Antonio Art League Museum, Artist of the Year. Her work is included in many private, corporate and public collections worldwide, including the Flagship Marriott Hotels, Arthur Anderson Consulting, the Southwest Research Institute, the University of Texas at San Antonio, and the San Antonio Museum of Art. She has had major exhibitions at the Ryukyuan Prefectural Museum, Okinawa, Japan; the Uano Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, Japan; the Eiteljorg Museum, Indianapolis, Indiana; Dadain Gallery, Wesley Theological Seminary, Washington, D.C.. Her work is in Permanent Collections of the San Antonio Museum of Art, San Antonio, Texas. Brenda is presently represented by Adair Margo Gallery, El Paso, Texas, and the Parchman Stremmel Gallery, Ltd., San Antonio, Texas.

Kingery is the founding member of the Hands of Hope International, and travels to Honduras, Mexico and Uganda to teach tapestry, design and techniques in workshops that encourage women of developing countries to use their indigenous artistic skills. As an artist, Brenda sees life patterns that can almost be described as tapestries. Her goal is to create paintings full of life’s breath. Just as with her Chickasaw grandmother’s stories, every culture gathers to sing and dance, and these stories are captured by Brenda Kingery’s paintings.