Beth Smith – Healing from Loss: the Restorative Power of Art
PLAYHOUSE ART SPACE Gallery open from 1 pm until 4 pm on Tuesdays, Thursdays & Saturdays

Beth Smith – Healing from Loss: the Restorative Power of Art

April 6 - May 6, 2023

Beth Smith – Healing from Loss: the Restorative Power of Art

About the artist

Beth Smith is a landscape painter on Martha’s Vineyard. Born and raised in Rhode Island, Beth moved to the Vineyard in 1983 with her husband Gary and her two daughters.

In 2010 her daughter Alison died unexpectedly from sepsis. With profound grief and thoughts of Alison, Beth picked up a paintbrush in 2013. Little did she know how painting would help her heal from her loss. On the long path to healing, her work was initially dark, then evolved to softer edges and captured the light streaming through the clouds. Influenced by island seascapes, farms, and pastoral scenes, she concentrated on brush strokes and texture.

Beth is self-taught, with no formal art training, and she paints every chance she gets. The beauty of the island is the backdrop for her work and has acted as her visual lens.

Beth paints abstracts with acrylic and charcoal as her medium. Her influences are Allen Whiting, Mary Sipp-Green, Anne Besse Shepard, John Singer Sargent and Edward Hopper.

Beth’s goal is to transport people to that place on the canvas – the dunes, the sea, the clouds, and to feel the breeze from the marshes – and to always remember Alison.

Awards and Recognition:
Oak Bluffs Tabernacle Art Show – August 2017 – Second Place for Mixed Media
Martha’s Vineyard Agriculture Fair – August 2018 – Second Place for Acrylics
Oak Bluffs Tabernacle – August 2018 – Second Place for Acrylics
Cousin Rose Special Award for Best Impressionist – August 2018
Polly Hill Arboretum Landscape Exhibit – June to August 2019
MV Film Exhibit- Feb 2019

Beth is currently showing at Portobello Road Gallery, Juniper, and Featherstone Center for the Arts.

Artist Statement

The island’s natural beauty is my visual lens, dominated by the light that penetrates through the trees, the blades of grass and the reflections off of the sea.

I am not formally trained. I began painting as a path to healing after losing my daughter Alison in 2010. I had a rewarding career as an emergency room nurse for over 48 years. Of those 48 years, 38 were at Martha’s Vineyard Hospital. 

As time went on, I painted daily, in-between shifts and my paintings (unknown to me at the time) transitioned from dark to light hues throughout my healing process and my use of colors became more present. The vistas on the island create magical backdrops and my brushstrokes are purposeful and at times, heavy and textured. 

My go to mediums are acrylic and charcoal. Lately, I am enjoying painting abstracts which allow my painting to have no boundaries or rules – what’s more fun than that?

Proceeds from art sales are shared between the artist and MV Playhouse.