Barbara Jones-Hogu was born in Chicago. She received a BA from Howard University in 1959, a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1964, and a MS with a concentration in printmaking from the Institute of Design at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago in 1970. Jones-Hogu is associated with the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s and 1970s. As a member of OBAC (Organization for Black American Culture), she was one of the muralists who created the important “Wall of Respect” in 1967 on the south side of Chicago – a public work that inspired the creation of socially, politically and culturally themed murals across the urban American landscape. In 1968, Jones-Hogu became a founding member of the African Commune of Bad Relevant Artists (AfriCOBRA). As a member of AfriCOBRA she participated in formulating the group’s mission statement, which stressed black independence and artistic self-determination.