Debra Sheffer

Artist Statement

The work in this exhibit is the result of recent explorations into the quiet spaces of the Shenandoah Valley. My most frequent locations have included Shenandoah, Augusta, and, most of all, Highland and Bath counties.

Since I spend my weekdays in a deadline-driven office environment without a view of the outside world, I crave time to absorb the beauty of these quiet spaces. Painting allows time for that. It’s active observation. Most of my work is painted plein air (in the open air), and the practice has changed the way I see the world. In my mind’s eye, I’m continually making paintings as I observe the world around me. I have been transfixed by the way a tree is, at once, a negative shape and a positive one; the way that the white hue of a barn is altered by neighboring hues; and the way a field of golden grasses, upon closer inspection, becomes a surprisingly complex mass of colors.

 Artist Bio

Debra received her BA from Bridgewater College and has studied with many artists including Frank Hobbs, Bill White and Rick Weaver. She is one of the original members of CoArt Gallery in Staunton, Va., and paints often in the company of her husband and border collie. She is the Graphic Design Director at Bridgewater College.