In 2008, Paul R. Jones donated a portion of his collection of African American art to the University of Alabama. With over 1,700 pieces, the Paul R. Jones Collection of American Art at The University of Alabama is one of the largest collections of African American art in the world. Jones was known as a passionate collector who sought to collect from both well-known and lesser-known artists, a quality which makes his collection distinct.
The Paul R. Jones Collection is designed to share the works of American artists and their significance with the people of Alabama and beyond and to be used to educate students on the importance of art in life. Works from the collection are on exhibit year-round at the Paul R. Jones Gallery in Tuscaloosa, Alabama and are exhibited in galleries on The University of Alabama campus and at other educational institutions and venues. The collection is incorporated into curricula at The University of Alabama, providing students with opportunities to learn and experience the significance of art first-hand.