Because of his colorful, contemporary style and dedication to personalizing paintings for athletes and inspirational entertainers, artist James Peterson has been named the United States Sports Academy’s Sport Artist of the Year in the Painter category. Peterson will be introduced to the public at the institution’s Awards of Sport program on its Daphne, Ala., campus on Thursday, November 10, 2022.

Peterson is a contemporary portrait artist originally from Milwaukee, Wisc. His original 60×48 portrait of NBA Hall of Fame player Alex English is autographed by both the athlete and the artist. Peterson paints larger-than-life portraits of inspirational athletes and entertainers. As part of that series, Peterson created two unique portraits of each subject, gifting on to the athlete and keeping the other signed original, or in this case, donating it.

He graduated from University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Fine Art degree. He spent many years of his early career painting larger-than-life portraits of inspirational athletes and entertainers. As a part of this series, James usually made two unique paintings of each subject, gifting one to the athlete and keeping the other signed original. James is also currently accepting portrait commissions. James has been featured in gallery shows at the Bergstrom-Mahler and the Allen Thomas Gallery.

His autographed original Alex English piece is on permanent display at the American Sport Art Museum & Archives on the Academy campus.

The United States Sports Academy is an independent, non-profit, accredited, special mission sports university created to serve the nation and world with programs in instruction, research and service. The role of the Academy is to prepare men and women for careers in the profession of sports.

Founded in 1984, ASAMA is dedicated to the preservation of sports art, history, and literature. The ASAMA collection is composed of more than 1,800 works of sport art across a variety of media, including paintings, sculptures, assemblages, prints and photographs. The museum is open free to the public from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. For more information, go to

The Academy is based in Daphne, Ala.  For more information, call (251) 626-3303.