Gladys Nelson Smith was an artist of surprising versatility. Her enduring search for styles that aptly reflected her subject as well as her own interior vision included florals, landscapes, portraits and maternal themes: she also stepped into a realm not ordinarily attempted by female artists of the period by depicting black subject matter.
As with singular artists who have their own vision and distinctive styles, her work is not aligned with any particular school of painting. To compare Smith to her contemporaries would be futile as she did not look to others for inspiration or validation. The wealth of unique content and expression in her work came from within.
A tribute to her enduring talent and lifetime of creative achievement occurred in 1985 when the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. held a retrospective of her work.
Estate of the Artist