James Seffens grew up in an Ohio enclave populated by his extended family. It was a DIY, grow your own sort of place, so naturally James taught himself to paint, build, and carve. He attended OSU on an academic scholarship, obtaining a degree in geology. Upon moving to New York City in the 1970's he met and began working with an older sculptor, Nicolas Cortes, who had a studio in Hell's Kitchen where he produced store displays. James maintained the Hell's Kitchen storefront studio for 31 years, relocating to Long Island City in 2011.
Recognition for Seffens craft work in papier-mache came in a solo show of his work in Philadelphia, a grant from the Ebay Foundation, and a nationally broadcast segment on the PBS program “Antiques Roadshow, FYI” in addition to several mentions in print.
For his work as a fine artist he has been twice awarded the Hell’s Kitchen Foundation artist grant, received a civic commission for a bronze relief sculpture from the Village of Wappinger’s Falls, NY, and has had solo shows with Chashama in NYC, and Departure Studios in LIC. Recently James work and studio were featured in a segment for “Access Studio,” a newly launched series of artist interviews that has been airing on public access tv in the NYC area since 2020.