Melissa Cowper-Smith uses projected video animation, digital printing, hand papermaking, collage, and painting to express memory, forgetting, and the passing of time. Her works depict natural and agricultural landscapes, objects, and domestic interiors. She has exhibited in several NYC galleries and in many other galleries and venues nationally. Recent exhibitions include "The 60th Annual Delta Exhibition" at the Arkansas Arts Center (2018)"Traces Remain" at Rockford University Museum, Rockford, IL (2018), The 2018 Small Works on Paper Touring Exhibition (Arkansas Arts Council),  "Shelter In Place" at the Laman Public Library Gallery Little Rock, AR (2017), and "Dawn Holder + Melissa Cowper-Smith: Traces Remain" at Historic Arkansas Museum (2017). Melissa is a founding member of tART, an all female art-collective based in New York City. Between 2006-2011 she exhibited her work with tART.  In 2013, she founded a second all-female art collective, Culture Shock, based in Arkansas. In addition to making art, Melissa grows fibers, food, and flowers on her farm, Wildland Gardens. She teaches at the University of Central Arkansas. She is the recipient of the 2018 Polly Crews Scholarship from the Arkansas Committee of the National Museum of Women in the Arts. She was awarded a 2018 Individual Artists Fellowship from the Arkansas Arts Council. Melissa received a BFA from the University of Victoria in British Columbia before moving to New York City (2002-2011) to complete an MFA at Hunter College. 



M.F.A.                         2005                                  Hunter College, New York, NY

B.F.A. (honors)            2001                                  University of Victoria, Victoria, BC




60th Annual Delta Exhibition, Arkansas Arts Center, Little Rock, AR, May 25 -August 26

Art of the Heirloom, National Heirloom Expo, Santa Rosa, California, September

Fascination (with members of Culture Shock), Laman Library Gallery, North Little Rock, AR, June 15- July 11

Traces Remain (solo show), Rockford University Art Gallery, Rockford, IL, March 23-April 20

Small Works on Paper, Touring exhibition January 2018-Novemeber 2018. Organized by the Arkansas Arts Council,  Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, Little Rock , Harding University, Searcy, Arkansas Tech University, Russellville, Community Creative Center, Fayetteville, University of Arkansas Rich Mountain, Mena ,The Arts Center of the Grand Prairie, Stuttgart, Henderson State University, Arkadelphia, Batesville Area Arts Council (Gallery on Main), DeltaARTS and Arkansas State University Mid-South, West Memphis


Shelter In Place, September-October 2017, William F. Laman Library Gallery, Little Rock, AR

Dawn Holder & Melissa Cowper-Smith: Traces Remain (two-person show), Trinity Gallery, Historic Arkansas Museum, Little Rock, AR, May 12-August 6

Nasty Women, Gallery 1, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Little Rock, AR August 2017,  and Russell Fine Arts Gallery, Henderson State University,  Arkadelphia, AR. March  and March 2017


Shine Your Rubies, Hide Your Diamonds: Culture Shock Art Collective, Butler Center, May-August, Little Rock AR

Painting 360, Butler Center, Little Rock, AR

Small Works on Paper, Touring exhibition January 2016-Novemeber 2016. Organized by the Arkansas Arts Council, Batesvillle Area Arts Council, Hendrix College, Arkansas Tech University, University of Arkansas Fayetteville, University of Arkansas Fort Smith, Searcy Art Gallery, Delta Cultural Center, Art Center of the Grand Prairie, University of Arkansas Monticello, University of Arkansas Hope. 


Painting 360, Hendrix College Art Gallery A, Conway, AR

57th Annual Delta Exhibition, The Arkansas Arts Center, Little Rock, AR

Art of the South, Hyde Gallery, Memphis College of Art, Memphis, TN

Artists in our Midst, Rialto Gallery, Morrilton, AR

Fleeting Gardens (solo show), Batesville Area Arts Council Gallery, Batesville, AR

Show & Tell Art Collective, Stephens Gallery, University of the Ozarks, Clarksville, AR

Faculty Exhibition, Hendrix College Art Gallery A, Conway, AR


Show & Tell Art Collective, Kresge Gallery, Batesville, AR

Faculty Exhibition, Hendrix College Art Gallery A, Conway, AR

66th River Valley Invitational, Fort Smith Regional Art Museum, Fort Smith, AR


Looking In/Looking Out, A Synthetic Zero Exhibition, Bronx Art Space, Bronx, NY

Papertrail, Asnuntuck Comminity College Gallery,  Enfield, CT           


These Trees, Sweet Lorraine Gallery, Brooklyn, NY (two-person show)

These Trees, Hendrix College Art Gallery, Conway, AR

Art of the Heirloom, National Heirloom Expo, Petaluma, CA


Art of the Heirloom, National Traveling Exhibition, more info at

Billboard Art Project: Nashville, The Billboard Art Project, Shown simultaneously on 4 LED billboards, Nashville TN


tART @ A.I.R.: What’s in a Collective, A.I.R. Gallery, Brooklyn, NY

Yet Another Roadside Attraction, Richmond Billboard Project, LED billboard on Interstate I95, Richmond VA


tART @ A.I.R., A.I.R. Gallery, Brooklyn, NY

First Exposure, Art-Bridge, NYC (print installed on scaffolding on West 23rd St, Btwn. 9th and 10th Ave)

What Surrounds Us: Finding and Making Home, Ernest Rubenstein Gallery, NYC

Adelphi Authors and Artists, Swirbul Library Gallery, Adelphi University, Garden City, NY

I Heart Art, Work Gallery, Brooklyn, NY

Visual Aids: Postcards from the Edge, Metro Pictures, NYC


Adelphi Faculty Exhibition, Adelphi University Center, Garden City, NY

tART Summer Salon, Rabbit Hole Gallery, Brooklyn, NY


tART Spring Salon, 261 Broadway, NYC


tART Fall Salon, 147 Bowery, NYC

M.F.A. Thesis Exhibition, Hunter College, NYC (catalogue)


Night of 1000 Drawings, Artists Space, NYC


Helen Pitt Triennial Awards Exhibition, Kelowna Art Gallery, Kelowna, BC, (catalogue)

Medium Rare/Well Done, University of Victoria, Victoria, BC, Canada (catalogue)

Collecting Identities, Fernwood Community Center, Victoria, BC, Canada


Sacred and Profane Love Machine, Visual Arts Gallery, University of Victoria, Canada



Only in Arkansas, August 7, 2018 "Nature in Art: Melissa Cowper-Smith" by Julie Kohl

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette- River Valley & Ozark Edition, "Area artists show works in annual Delta Exhibition" June 24, 2018, Review by Carol Rolf (60th Annual Delta Exhibition)

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette- River Valley & Ozark Edition, Sunday, January 21, 2018, Front & Center, "Canadian artist finds inspiration in Arkansas" by Tammy Keith, Photos by William Harvey

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette- River Valley & Ozark Edition, May 2016, Review by Carol Rolf (Shine Your Rubies, Hide Your Diamonds at the Concordia Gallery, Butler Center)

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette- River Valley & Ozark Edition, January 2016, Review by Carol Rolf (2016 Small Works on Paper)

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette- River Valley & Ozark Edition, July 2015, Review by Carol Rolf (57th Annual Delta Exhibition)

Arkansas Times, June 2015, Press for the 57th Annual Delta Exhibition

Number Inc, Issue #83, Summer 2015, Review by Carolyn Furnish (Delta 2015)

Bronx Art Exchange, Interview and Review, Nov. 2013, by Jeffrey Guard

Arkansas Life Magazine, August 2013, Pg. 14 Interview and commentary by Jordan Hickey (Image: American Heritage #8)

Jesus, Jazz, and Buddhism, "Memory," Commentary by Dr. Jay McDaniel, Spring 2013

Jesus, Jazz, and Buddhism, "Colors of the Past," Commentary by Dr. Jay McDaniel, October 2011

NY Art Beat, August 2010 (tART at A.I.R.)

Richmond Times Dispatch, Road Art is Coming Saturday to a billboard near I-195, September 30, 2010 (Yet Another Roadside Attraction)

The New York Times, City Beat Blog, March 27, 2009 (Art-Bridge)

AMNY, Mach 20, 2009 (Art-Bridge)

The WestsiderMarch 5, 2009 (Art-Bridge)

Time Out New York, February 12, 2009 (I heart Art/Work Gallery)

Black Book Magazine, July 3, 2008 (tART @ Rabbitholestudio)

AmpPower,, May 2005 (Blog/Review)



The Riveter, May 2015, Interview by Bekah Hall (Wildland Gardens)

Number Inc. Issue #79, Summer 2014, Interview by Morgan Page

ArtBridge, Artist in Profile,, October 2009

Todd Kelly’s Art Space,, March 2009

Adele Chong, Video Interview, Concordia University, March 2002



Anderson Ranch Arts Center, June 25-30 2016Photo Encaustic: Luminous LayersTaught by K Rhynus Cesark

Penland School of Craft, June 12-24 2016The Topography of Handmade Paper, Taught by Mary Hark



2018                      Individual Artists Fellowship (works on paper), Arkansas Arts Council

Executive Directors Scholarship, Anderson Ranch Arts Center

Polly Crews Scholarship, Arkansas Committee of the National Museum of Women in the Arts

2015                       Horn Scholarship to attend The Penland School of Craft

2005                      Carolyn David Horowitz Memorial Fund, Hunter College

2001                       Helen Pitt Award, Vancouver Foundation

1999                       Pat Martin Bates Scholarship, University of Victoria Women’s Club

                    Presidents Scholarship, University of Victoria



University of Central Arkansas, AR,  Drawing, Color, Figure Drawing, 2D Design, 2011-present 

Hendrix College, AR, Drawing, Digital Art 2011- 2017

Adelphi University, NY Digital Art, 2006 – 2011

Studio in a School, NYC Graphic Design, Drawing, Painting, Assemblage 2006 – 2011

Essex County College, NJ Art Appreciation, Foundations 2005 – 2007



Henderson State University, Arkedialphia, AR (2014)

Hartwick College, Oneonta, NY (2013)

Hendrix College, Conway, AR (2012)

Bellarmine University, Louisville, KY (2011)

Adelphi University, Garden City, NY (2008, 2011)

Brown University, Providence, RI (2008)

Hunter College, New York, NY (2006)

Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria, BC (2001)

University of Victoria Women’s Club, Victoria, BC (1999)



Culture Shock (formally The Show & Tell Art Collective) 2013-present

tART Collective, 2004-2011

College Art Association, 2005-present




(the)LAND, Black Box Student Gallery, UCA, Conway, AR


Small Worlds, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria, BC, Canada


Yellow Wallpaper, Visual Arts Gallery, University of Victoria, Canada



tART Zine Vol.2, July 2010

tART Zine Vol.1, November 2007



Curatorial: Juror, press release, invitations, post-card design and printing, opening/closing events, installation (lighting, mounting, hanging, signage) de-installation, gallery maintenance

  • Black Box Student Gallery, University of Central Arkansas, 2016, Juror

  • Conway League of Artists, Annual Salon, Conway Arkansas, 2015, Juror

  • Adelphi Student Exhibitions, 2006-2011, Organizer

  • Studio in a School Student Exhibitions, 2006-2010, Organizer

  • Luhring Augustine Gallery, NYC, 2005, Art Handler, Assistant Registrar

  • Max Protetch Gallery, NYC, 2006, Art Handler, Archivist, Media Designer

  • tART salon and silent auction, NYC (2005-2011), Organizer

  • Hunter College Times Square Gallery, NYC (2002-2005), Gallery Sitter

  • University of Victoria, Visual Arts Gallery, Victoria, BC (1998-2001), Curatorial work

  • Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria, BC (2000), Curatorial work

Art handling: Packaging, shipping and storage: plastic, bubble wrap, cardboard, foam, wooden crates. Handling of paintings (including very large paintings), sculptures (glass, bronze, marble, wax, electronics…), photography and prints on paper, aluminum, fabric and plexi-glass.

  • Luhring Augustine Gallery, NYC (2005)

  • Max Protetch Gallery, NYC (2006)

  • Estate of Esteban Vicente, NYC (2006)

Digital archiving: Photography, Slide and transparency scanning, Color correction, Image adjustments (cropping, alignment, size, resolution), Set-up and maintenance of Database, Identifying works, Developing Catalogue Raisonne

  • Valerie Jaudon (Artist), NYC (2005)

  • Richard Kalina (Artist), NYC (2005)

  • Estate of Esteban Vicente, NYC (2006)

  • Max Protetch Gallery, NYC (2006)