The artists we feature at our art center are working professional Virginia based artists and performers. Many of these artists have been featured in juried art shows, published, showcased in galleries and have work in collections. We invite you to visit our center and see more works by these wonderful artists. Often you can even bump into the artists and sit down and talk with them.
As someone who was exposed to art at an early age and then went on to pursue a Fine Arts degree, I strive to create a work of art out of everything I do. I want to show that art and design exists in everything and everywhere. I enjoy examining the details, various angles, the textures, light, patterns and how they can transform even the most mundane objects. I have worked in a wide variety of media and enjoy exploring them all from drawing, painting, sculpture, carving, photography and film.
I am passionate about creating images that are breathtaking and dynamic. I love being outdoors, exploring and going to extremes to capture those special moments that create amazing images. My passion and drive for perfection always keeps me looking for new ideas, techniques and locations in everything I do. From capturing nature’s beauty, creating conceptual art, casual portraits, special events to corporate work, my goal is to have my work really connect with people.
Originally from Hampton, Virginia, she has been doodling and painting since childhood. In or around 2014 she discovered “outdoor” painting. She found that the whole practice of “En Plein Air” challenged her like no other painting practice. Working in oils, she tries to capture light, the mood, and the colors of her subjects. While outdoors, she strives to portray her works with realism along with a touch of impressionistic suggestion. Her favorite subjects include wild spaces, bright with shady contrasts, the ocean side, and always nature. Having fallen totally in love with the Northern Neck and now residing there, she finds no shortages of her favorite subject matters.
The sailboat "Atelier" is home, studio and sometimes gallery for David Aiken. His paintings are vivid impressions of the places and people he finds as he travels the water routes of the United States and the Bahamas. In the summer months, the boat is in the Chesapeake, allowing ample time for sketching and painting in Bay tributaries and waterside towns. Whether working in watercolor or acrylic, David uses direct strokes of color over color to bring a strong element of design to his art.
David was interviewed for a nationally syndicated television program focusing on boating related careers. He was invited to exhibit at the annual show presented by the Bahamas National Trust - only one of two non-Bahamian artsits to be included. He is also the coauthor of seven children's books, and he has illustrated a total of thirteen.
Maria Reardon paints the world around her. Working primarily in pastels, she loves being outdoors, immersed in the world, observing and experiencing everything going on around her. She's drawn to the unique and ever-changing relationships of form and color. She is intrigued by the unexpected combinations of light and color which characterize her work, while working within the confines of physical forms and the spaces they inhabit. Maria is a Virginia native and received her formal education from Virginia Commonwealth University earning a Bachelor’s of Fine Art in illustration. She studied portraiture with Daniel Greene and continued her study of landscape by attending workshops with Albert Handell, Lorenzo Chavez and other nationally known artists. Her work has been exhibited throughout the Richmond area and is in private collections.
Kim Hall is a nationally recognized painter from Richmond, Virginia. She is an avid plein air painter and travels frequently with her trusty K-9 companion Romeo searching for those inspiring landscapes. When not painting outdoors she can be found in her Richmond or Montross studios painting commissions, quirky still lifes or larger landscapes inspired by her plein air studies. She has been inspired by a wide range of artists from past and present, including just a few; Matisse, Lautrec, Cezanne, Vuillard, Edgar Payne, Emil Gruppe, Diebenkorn, Larry Moore, Lori Putnam, Dawn Whitelaw, Nancy Tankersley and Jill Carver. The Virginia native and lifelong artist holds a degree from George Mason University and continued studies from The Corcoran School of Art. Her evocative and vibrant paintings can be seen in galleries and plein air events throughout the U.S..
Aaron Bowles is a painter whose themes involve the environment, dreams and mythologies of the land, and the dramatically changing qualities of nature. He works in a painterly style that features compositionally intensive abstraction with a colorist’s aesthetic. The work is composed in layers, of sometimes unexpected color, with a direct, expressionist stroke, based on emotionally charged scenes that contain light, drama and spirit. He exhibits nationally and is in numerous institutional and private collections. Aaron studied painting at East Carolina University, and holds a bachelors degree from Virginia Commonwealth University where he focused on graphic design and illustration. He continued his art education at the graduate level by studying painting at George Mason University. A former assistant professor of design, he taught art at George Mason and Northern Virginia Community College. Aaron is also an advertising creative director and web designer. He lives in Richmond and Tappahannock, Virginia.
Donna Doyle was born in Washington, DC in 1947, when Washington was still a small city. She spent many hours visiting
the Museum of Natural History and many art museums. It was there and in the creeks and fields
around her little farm on the edge of DC that she found the love of nature and art and especially horses.
Having grown up on a small horse farm on the edge of Washington D.C., horses have always
been her passion. She enjoyed riding from an early age and especially the excitement of competing in horse
shows. The back of a horse was her favorite place to be. So, horses are often her subject along with other animals, people, and landscapes. Each painting
is an attempt to portray the beauty of the horse and the deep connections between humans and the
horses who share their lives.
A former horse trainer/instructor, Debby now uses her intuitive sense for animals to portray their individual personalities through her artwork and photography. Lover of detail, her favorite mediums are photography, pencil and colored pencil. Debby’s equine, canine and wildlife work is in private collections worldwide and has won numerous awards in National and International Juried exhibits. Her work has been featured in “Horses in Art” magazine, exhibited at the AKC Museum in St. Louis and the "International Museum of the Horse" in Kentucky. Her work was chosen for the books “Strokes of Genius: The Best of Drawing”, “Art Journey Animals, A collection of Inspiring Masterworks”, Best of Virginia Artists” and is featured in the book “Best of America, Photography”. Her photographs are published in books, magazines and calendars. When not traveling to horse events, wildlife locations, and farms for equine portraits, she works from her home studio in Manakin-Sabot, Va.
Dolores Daly Flessner
My interest in art stems from my childhood, as I was raised in a family where art was cherished. My earliest images were of horses, and they have remained a life-long fascination, so I found myself absorbed with creating them on paper. My greatest desire was to show the beauty of their movement. After studying fine art at the American University in Washington, DC, I worked for horse farms and tried to pursue my art on the side. I Illustrated for various horse publications, including Equus and Polo magazines. In the 1990’s and early 2000’s I began showing my work in venues including American Academy of Equine Art shows, polo clubs, the Kentucky Derby Museum, and the Cheyenne Frontier Museum. I also made illustrations of religious and family themes for the Respect life Program for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. In 2003 my husband and I moved to the Northern Neck of Virginia, fulfilling our life-long dreams of living in the countryside. I am most grateful to live and work in this very special place. I also enjoy drawing and painting local nature scenes and wildlife.
I have a lifelong love of drawing and painting portraits of people and animals, especially horses. It's a very special moment when you feel you have captured the subject. I work in both oils and watercolors and enjoy seeing the painting evolve. I feel fortunate to have studied with artists Sam Savitt, Terry Isaac and Lynn Maderich as well as others. I often work on several pieces at a time since oils can require drying before progressing to the next step. This method also brings fresh eyes to a work in progress and I always have something to work on at different stages of completion
Marion Mercer is an artist living in Warrenton, VA. In 1985 she received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Radford University. After working as a graphic designer and illustrator for seven years, she returned to RU where she earned a Master of Fine Arts and K-12 art teaching certification. Since 1996 she has been teaching art to students ranging from kindergartners to college students. She was very happily looking forward to her 8th year with Lord Fairfax Community College, based at the Middletown campus. “I consider drawing the basis of all artwork, and it is my most sustaining interest in art. Life drawing is essential to maintain a close bond between artist and subject. Building on this foundation I have happily explored painting, printmaking, sculpture and ceramics using a wide variety of media and techniques. I am always curious about new methods and materials.”
Nancy Brittle, having grown up in the Virginia Piedmont in a small farming community finds inspiration in everyday events and familiar places, many of which evoke memories from the 1950's rural life that continues within and about her household. Oil is a favorite medium and she prefers the gesture found in alla prima pleine aire work to the studio long piece. Ms. Brittle graduated in studio and art history from Mary Washington College before continuing her studies at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and the Ecole des Beaux Arts. She also worked on an MFA at the American University and has continued painting classes at VCU, and workshops with pleine aire instructors Lori Putnam, Susan Abbott, and David Williams. She attended the 2015 Publishers Invitational retreat in the Adirondacks. Ms. Brittle continues to compete on the national level. In the past year she was juried into the Women Painters of the Southeast's annual show and the Spacious Skies Exhibition at the Ann Marie Art Center, Solomon's, MD.
I am a painter working in acrylic/mixed media, oil and pastel. My first love has always been painting abstractly, but I am also a landscape painter usually painting plein aire. I enjoy being outside and painting my environment whenever possible. I move through each of the mediums with the intention that painting techniques in one medium will lead to explorations for the next medium and that each is an inspiration for new ideas in the other. I especially enjoy pastels because of the opportunities to layer, use rich or soft color and develop amazing textures that are an avenue for personal growth and expression. I am inspired by the beauty of nature, atmospheric conditions, and seasonal colors when I am painting landscape. This often transitions into my abstractions. I was born and raised in rural Fauquier County, Virginia and that is where I live and work. I have had a second home in Lancaster County for fifteen years and often spend time painting there. I regularly participate in juried shows, show my work in several galleries in the region and I have had a number of solo shows as well as group shows. I am a member of the Mid Atlantic Pastel Society and have been juried into the Pastel Society of America as an associate member.
Mr. Edmondson was raised in Hampton, VA and for the last 29 years, lives in Mathews County, VA. His painting began in 1984, after watching a PBS series on painting with BARKLEY SHEAKS, a local Tidewater artist. He was fortunate enough to take lessons from him at the Bay School Community Arts Center in Mathews, VA. Other artists who have heavily influenced his work have been JEAN-SIMEON CHARDIN and SANFORD ROBINSON GIFFORD, who was a member of the Hudson River School.
Mr. Edmondson's paintings have been shown in galleries across Virginia and North Carolina and are in private collections. Some of his past awards received have been First Place in the NATIONAL ARTS PROGRAM, and THE SCHOLARSHIP AWARD, Best in Show, 2nd Place and several “Honorable Mention” awards, and the coveted “Artist Choice Award” voted on by all the artists at MATHEWS MARKET DAYS event, which happens in the fall.
Recent challenges have been to include new techniques, large painting compositions, and introduce different colors into my riverscapes.
With her style of painting; American Realism, her subject matter may vary, but she always strives to capture the essence of the subject; whether it be that inexplicable magic in the soul of a horse, or the ambient glow of the California condor. That “intangible something” fascinates her. Mary Cornish will tell you her art and creative spirit has always been a determining factor in her approach to life. She was raised in the Puget sound area of Washington state, and received her early training through Grace Wagner and Classical painter William Tartaglia. She received the National Scholastic Gold Key Art Award in Painting during her Senior year in High School, culminating with an exhibit at the Frye Art Museum in Seattle, Washington.
She has won numerous awards for her artwork and has had solo exhibits throughout the United States. Her paintings have appeared in shows across the United States such as the American Academy of Equine Art, Women Artists of the West and Woodson Art Museum’s famed Birds in Art.
Dana Lee Thompson
Dana lives and paints in the countryside near Casanova, Virginia. She always had a love for animals especially dogs. As an adult she started foxhunting and immediately fell in love with the hounds. She captures the essence and soul of each hound or animal that she paints. Dana also has a great fondness for birds and African wildlife that are finding their way to more and more of her artwork.
Dana paints not only large format paintings but her miniatures are highly sought after by collectors. She has won numerous awards with her miniatures and belongs to several Miniature Societies.
Her work has been published on the cover of the Chronicle of the Horse, The Piedmont Virginian magazine and the Masters of the Foxhound Centennial book. She has paintings in the permanent collection at the AKC Museum of the Dog in St Louis, Missouri and a Purchase to Permanent Collection with the Miniature Art Society of Florida.
A native Virginian, Sharon has continually found the means of self-expression through her artwork. She strives to communicate to others the beauty and joy she derives from her surroundings, and what she envisions. The process of creating a work of art, from conception to completion, is the fuel upon which she thrives. "Art is the way in which I interpret my surroundings, the things that I hold dear, and my perception of beauty. Sharing these perceptions with the world is what I aspire to do. Orchestrating the harmony of color and composition, within a picture plane, inspires and challenges me. The passion to create my best art always lies in front of me. It is that passion that keeps me learning and growing. Art brings harmony to my soul. It is spiritual."
Anne Montgomery Murphy’s artistic journey began several years ago and has continued to grow and mature. Her primary medium has always been acrylics but her approach and style has continually changed and evolved. Abstract themes have been her focus and her exploration of texture and color over the years has resulted in a unique and absorbing style.
Anne grew up in Hampton, Virginia and after high school she received her bachelors degree from Virginia Tech and graduate degrees from the University of Montana and The George Washington University. Anne’s educational pursuits led her into a long career in school counseling and administration. While working and raising her family, she started exploring her creative side and within a few years she began to develop her painting style and technique.
Recently, Anne left the world of education to pursue her creative passions. Her body of work continues to grow and her style and approach to abstract painting keeps evolving.
My decision to work with metal was formed early in life . The event, as I remember it, was a kind of communion with the molten earth. I made a decision, then, based on the mysterious description of a man who lived in the foothills of Virginia. He was a blacksmith. Rural Virginia provided me plenty of opportunities to learn about life on a farm, peer into the vast sky at night, and explore the wild details of nature. The observations from those years contribute to my work today. As a teenager I hiked in the Canadian Rockies and lived in Ecuador, Mexico and Costa Rica. In Mexico, I apprenticed to an artisanal metal shop. When I returned from Costa Rica in 1992, I found my way to the sculpture department at Virginia Commonwealth University. The fundamental concepts of studio art were formed in the two years I spent there, experimenting with various materials. I was compelled to integrate what I had learned about process oriented sculpture. I moved to Pittsburgh, worked in the arts community, completed many group projects, augmenting my interest in sculptural ironwork. I completed my degree in art from Carlow University and returned to Virginia to realize my original intent.
The South and the New England area have been inspirational to Susan’s paintings, depicting the ever changing landscapes, with an emphasis on variations of light, and how it effects changes in the colors of the landscape and sky. Susan was an oil and acrylic painter originally, and moved into watercolors and guache later on. As a result, her work is painterly, with the combination of the use of watercolor, guache, acrylics and graphite.
Susan has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with a concentration in Water Media, from The University of New Hampshire, with a minor in Education, and studied Studio Art, Art History and Language in Rome, Italy, with Tyler School of Art. She has exhibited in many galleries and shows in the New England and Virginia areas, and has works in many corporate and private collections.
Cheryl Beahm Connors
Studying with local artists in Williamsburg, Ms. Connors has come to love creating papier mâché sculpture. With little formal art training, she is primarily self-taught and is captivated by the experimental nature of the medium. Her portfolio includes nursery rhyme inspirations such as Humpty Dumpty and the Cow Jumped Over the Moon; realistic animals such as a piglet, Welsh corgi, dachshund, and cats; exaggerated everyday items like big frosted donuts; and more. Expect the unexpected.
A Virginia native, Ms. Connors professional background includes degrees in political science/criminal justice, and public administration. After ten years in local government management, she switched to research, evaluation and training in the criminal justice field. She currently works part-time managing a small criminal justice consulting firm.
Ms. Connors lives in Williamsburg with her husband Ed and their two cats. The two adult daughters have flown the coop.
Caroline Garrett Hardy
Paper is my métier. I’ve worked extensively with two-dimensional paper collage, but this most recent series of artwork resulted from a desire to move into another dimension. This led to the exploration of papier mâché , working on fully developed three-dimensional objects, something I’d not previously done.
The resulting animal representations evoke many associations for us, often triggering childhood experiences and feelings. Like many little girls, I once collected stuffed animals, even preferring them over dolls. They were my friends; even now, so many years later, the animals that you see on display give me (and perhaps you?) a feeling of warmth and companionship.
Working on the animals reminded me of Leonardo’s Bestiary, where he illustrated many different human qualities by reference to various animals, animals that at the time (and often still) were thought to exhibit those qualities. His use of these animal images as a kind of mediator between the human and the spiritual realms sharpened my interest and eventually compelled me to embark on a recreation of the Bestiary. The resulting hand-crafted book and several papier mâché animal selections from his text are also here on display.
JLyn Henderson's career has been in the field of interior design. She still loves what she does but on occasion must play with her creative artsy side. She loves working with all types of mixed media, papier mâché and is now learning how to quilt. The love of art along with design keeps her creative side very busy. JLyn still works in the design field and currently she's working on a commercial job in Williamsburg. She has won several awards for her work in design and has been recognized nationally.
Her papier mâché work has also been recognized and accepted in the art community. She has several collectors that showcase her work in their homes. All whimsical artsy critters that bring happy smiles to their owners face. Especially when holding a heart or flower asking to be loved.
Commissioned to do a store window display some 25 years ago launched an avocation in constructing, teaching and displaying Paper Mache'. Since that first “rabbit in the window”, a steady stream of animals, birds, insects and human forms have been constructed.
My spare time was spent helping my wife, an accomplished artist herself, run an antique and art store. While she painted my time was devoted to creating all kinds of whimsical critters as well as depictions of favorite nursery rhymes. The Cow Jumped over the Moon, Little Bo Peep, Jack Be Nimble etc. The medium has few boundaries impossible to cross. With our expanding inventories our next step was art shows and festivals. Over the ensuing years we have been shown at the Virginia Beach Boardwalk Show, Stockley Gardens, Williamsburg Occasion For The Arts, Mathews Market Days, Urbanna's Art on The Half Shell, and Williamsburg Center for The Creative Arts just to name a few.
The whimsy in Hank’s creations delights the young and old alike.
Yeon began painting in 2012 when she participated with her daughters in art classes taught by watercolor artist Elise Ritter. She has been painting off-and-on since then, and is primarily self-taught, with some occasional coaching by the teacher.
Yeon Jung is an artist who lives in Urbanna, Virginia. She is also the wife of the Rev. Hyung Moon, pastor of Urbanna United Methodist Church, and the mother of 2 daughters. Born in South Korea, she came to New York in 1992. She and her family moved to Northern Virginia in 2001 after her husband, formerly a professional singer, finished Seminary, and became a minister.