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El Bote #2 by Mel Smothers, Oil on Canvas, 22x26
Solo Exhibition 
February 16 - March 14, 2020 
Opening Reception
Saturday, February 22, 6:00 - 8:00pm
Meet the Artist at Opening Reception
Artist Talk at 7:30pm 

Dacia Gallery presents Refugee Rafts, a solo exhibition by Mel Smothers. This exhibition was inspired by immigrants risking their lives on makeshift boats trying to reach the shores of the United States of America for a better life for themselves and their children. All the oil paintings are painted in an expressionist manner in a fast pace that symbolizes the urgency and danger of crossing the ocean on these rafts. The artist explains his inspiration through the following statement: “My use of refugee rafts began when I saw one abandoned on a sand bar in the Dry Torutugas, USA. As much contemporary sculpture as it was life raft, its message was a unsinkable narrative for painting. How desperate would my life have to be to put my family and little else at the mercy of this boat?” Mel Smothers obtained his MFA from the University of Idaho in 1999. He has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions around the country. His work is found in many public art commissions in NYC, Miami, Chicago, and San Francisco. Mel’s work can also be found in six museum collections in the United States.

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