2023-24 Shipyard Artist in Residence
William Rhodes is a sculptural artist trained in traditional woodworking and joinery with a fine arts background. Rhodes blends fine art, craft and design with meaning and function. His work explores themes of hidden knowledge, iconographic imagery and forms and how they can change meaning, depending on the cultural context.
The catalyst for constant evolution in Rhodes’ art has been his travels, including Africa, Asia and Central and South America. The people, art and cultures of these societies have challenged him to integrate non-Western approaches to sculpture, furniture and art. Explorations into the contrast between these traditional cultures and our modern one have also added depth to the narrative quality of his work.
Rhodes received a BA in Furniture Building and Design from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia and a MFA from the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth. Rhodes’ creative works are in the collections of various galleries and museums. Most recently, his work was included in the collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. Rhodes, dedicates part of his time to art education, including art collaborations with schools in San Francisco, South Africa, Italy and Egypt. Rhodes is the co-founder of a Black art collective in San Francisco. The 3.9 Art Collective was formed in 2011 in response to the declining Black population in San Francisco.