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Upcoming Show -

MAY 2019
Seth Moskowitz and Barbara Rizza Mellin
May 1 - 31
HOP: Friday MAY 3

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Artworks Gallery Presents: Jessica Tefft, “Thoughts and Prayers” and Susan Smoot “Seasonal Terrain”

Exhibition dates: Sunday, March 31, through Saturday, April 27
Reception Sunday, April 7, 2-4pm
Open for Gallery Hop: Friday, April 5, 7 - 10 pm

Jessica Tefft’s current work is inspired by her sorrow of the incessant shooting deaths of children in our country.  The new work, titled "Thoughts and Prayers"is in mockery of politicians' feeble responses to gun tragedies.  The series of photogram images arose from questions that lingered in her heart each time she heard of another death – Aren't our children more sacred than guns? What do we value as a culture? Why can't we see past the statistics and see the pain being caused? Shouldn’t their deaths make us ashamed?   

She ventured to the darkroom to create photograms because they convey a depth of light and darkness. They are also a simple medium that can feel childlike, yet also intricate.

Tefft is currently the Director of Digital Arts and interim Director of Photography at the Sawtooth School for Visual Art. She is also currently the president of Artworks Gallery. 

Her outrage about gun violence comes from first-hand experience working as a photojournalist for newspapers. She often got sent to shootings, met people who loved people who'd been shot and killed, and took photos of them. 

Many of those killed from gun violence were children. At one point, she found herself knocking on the front doors of family members of those killed in the Columbine High School massacre, to request photos.

In the day to day, this was excruciating. Years later, with children of her own, she came to realize it is this country's epidemic. According to a study in the journal Pediatrics (, an average of 19 children are shot every day in this country, and 3.5 die.

As a professional photographer, Tefft's work has appeared in The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The Washington Times, the Chicago Tribune and the Rocky Mountain News. She has covered the White House, presidential elections and breaking news. Her assignments took her as far as Alaska and Cuba. She has won numerous awards for her work and has a studio art degree from Wake Forest University.

This new work by Susan Smoot, called “Seasonal Terrain,” is a collection of original paintings, confirming her fascination with landscape images. The simplicity and the intricacies of these paintings are rendered with the intention of paying respect to the scenes of our extraordinary world. What may seem a commonplace view becomes an expressive painting designed to feel familiar, comfortable and precious while capturing a fleeting moment of sunlight and shadow for all time.

  In contrast to this tumultuous world, Susan Smoot believes in providing her viewer with pleasing and uplifting views. Taking the time to see and appreciate the positive is a genuine skill. Bringing these concepts to the canvas reflects a long-time talent. For many years, Smoot has possessed the ability to visualize the best of our natural environment. “Seasonal Terrain” is another example of her exploration of local landscape.

  Susan Smoot is an award-winning artist, working in acrylic, pastel and watercolor.

Attached Images:
Jessica Tefft, “Untitled”, Photogram on metal.
Jessica Tefft, “Untitled”, Photogram on metal.
Susan Smoot, “On the Other Side”,Acrylic on canvas.
Susan Smoot, “Reaching”, Acrylic on canvas.

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