Vitus Shell is a mixed-media collage painter born in Monroe, LA, where he lives and works. His work is geared toward the black experience, giving agency to people from this community through powerful images deconstructing, sampling, and remixing identity, civil rights, and contemporary black culture. He received a BFA from Memphis College of Art, in 2000 and an MFA from the University of Mississippi, in 2008.
Vitus Shell has been in residencies at the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, Anderson Ranch Art Center, Hermitage Artist Retreat, Mass MoCA, Joan Mitchell Center, Skowhegan School of Art, and Masur Museum of Art. To date, he has accumulated an impressive list of achievements, some of which include: participating in exhibits at universities, museums, and private galleries across the country including The McKenna Museum of African American Art, Stephen F. Austin University, Miami University, Oxford, OH; painted murals for the National Civil Rights Museum’s NBA Pioneers exhibit, Indianola City Pool in Indianola, MS, Union Parish Elementary School in Farmerville, LA; and being commissioned to do public art by the Memphis UrbanArt Commission. Shell has received numerous grants including the Joan Mitchell MFA Award.
As of 2020, Vitus Shell is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor at Louisiana Tech University.