Photo of Rosie
Born in Paterson, New Jersey in 1951, Rose has spent most of her adult life in the bay area. She discovered her passion for art in 1996 and has been painting on mostly ceramics ever since. Rose received national recognition in fall of 1999 after appearing on the Oprah Winfrey Show and later her work was featured in "O" Magazine. Rose stumbled across her artistic interest and talent over 20 years ago when she and her younger sister Maxine Jones a former member of the female R&B recording group EnVogue started an ethnic line of bath and skin care products in California. Rose has long collected retro African American artifacts and inspired by her collection, began sketching designs for her won label, she soon found herself hooked on painting the nostalgic images. Soon after opening their retail shops in Novato and San Rafael, CA., a reporter wrote about some of her ceramic pieces and the other items sold in their store. It wasn't long before Gayle King, well known as Oprah Winfrey's best friend, commissioned Rose to paint a set of plates for Oprah. Rose is well aware that the images she paints can be painful reminders of oppression and abuse, however she insists although this imagery is controversial it is still a part of our culture. Lisa Woolfork, Assistant Professor of English at UVA says "In terms literary and cultural study, there's a tradition of black women artists trying to reclaim things that could be considered racist, it's a commendable strategy to seize the reins of interpretation" says Woolfork, "to put racist on notice that they don't get to control the terms of conversation or inquiry of debate." Rose agrees that her art can only be created by a black person, African Americans will never trust whites to do this imagery. Rose has recently returned to the bay area after spending years in Charlottesville, VA., where she became a resident artist at the Mc Guffy Art Center. During her time in Virginia Rose and fellow artist friend Lindsay Michie Eades created and art program for inmates that were incarcerated in the Central Virginia Penal system. They taught art in the local regional jail and in three different prisons to both male and female inmates, the art program was hugely successful and is the work she is most proud of.