Patricia Terrell-O’Neal

Artist Statement

My work consists of oil paintings on prepared canvas and drawings on paper mostly done in pen and ink. I create portraits, still lifes and narrative images. However, these traditional categories have a personal female perspective born out of my experience.

The portraits render a specific subject, not a general idea of a person. The still lifes study the composition of structure, color, light and shade. The narrative images are visual stories whose suggestions and associations are left open to interpretation by the viewer.

My current theme is water since it is a primal source of life and an essential element that every living thing on earth must have to survive. About 71% of the surface of this planet consists of oceans, which are teaming with plankton, fish, invertebrates, mammals, reptiles and diverse plant life. Two of the paintings included here show figures involved either in food gathering or relaxing by the seashore. The others depict hands reaching across the water to emphasize our human connection to each other and the need for cooperation.


2001 MFA New York Academy of Art, NY
1979-81 Studies Laguna Beach School of Art, CA
1976-79 Studies Ontario College of Art and Design, Toronto, Canada
1974-76 Studies Washington University, St. Louis, MO


Patricia Terrell-O’Neal was born in Franklin, TN but raised in Nashville. After graduating cum laude with an MFA from the New York Academy of Art, she moved to California and now has a studio in Santa Monica. She also has several other studios she travels to in three different countries on two separate continents.

Terrell-O’Neal’s work has been included in 14 solo exhibitions at venues in Southern California as well as in New York City, with international representation in both France and Taiwan. In 2008, she had and important solo exhibition at Bergamot Station in Santa Monica titled Mary Shelley’s Myth of Frankenstein, the Modern Prometheus, which traveled to Karpeles Manuscript Library Museum in Santa Barbara. Her paintings have also been included in numerous group shows emphasizing women as important artists in our society. She recently received a second place award for her work in the 17th International Open at Woman Made Gallery in Chicago, IL.

There is a permanent collection of her work at Chateau St. Philippe, a one thousand year old monastery in Savoie, France converted to a chateau 200 years ago. Several of her modern “Egg” paintings are on view at the home of noted architect, Henry Angel Ponce, in Yucatan, Mexico.

In 2013, the Huffington Post image blog featured some of her work. Three of her paintings were published in the Winter 2014 RED edition of ArtScent Art & Literature Journal, an international magazine based in Canada. She was also the focus of an “In the Studio” article by art historian Karen Schifman in the January 2015 issue of the Southern California Women’s Caucus for art electronic newsletter.