Jean Lacy was born Laura Jean Wells in 1932 in Washington, D.C. and grew up near the campus of Howard University. Ms. Lacy was introduced at an early age to the philosophical thought and writings of Alain Locke, W.E.B. Du Bois and other African-American intellectuals. She received her BA in Art Education from Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and continued her studies at the Art Students League, New York City, 1956-1957, and Otis Art Institute, Los Angeles, 1958.
As Director of the African-American Cultural Heritage Center for the Dallas Independent School District, 1977-1988, Ms. Lacy developed a number of educational programs aimed at emphasizing cultural enrichment through student study of art, artifacts, and memorabilia related to African-American history. Her art is enriched with the imagery and collective spirit of all people of African decent. Ms. Lacy incorporates mixed media paintings, sculptures and printmaking to visually elucidate the recurring themes of urban African American life and experience. Throughout her career, her artwork has been an expression of love for urban life and the myriad people in the African Diaspora. By aligning images of African antiquity with modern images of urban life, she illustrates a universal connection between people of African decent.