extraordinary art at an exceptional value

Artist Bios

click on artist name to view a bio

William Spencer III

Beginning as a commercial illustrator in the years before 1982 Spencer gradually made the switch to fine art around 1989. During that first year in northern California his work debuted at the prestigious Crocker Kingsley Exhibit which was curated by a former director of the New York Whitney Museum of Modern Art and the work was subsequently displayed in the Oldest Art Museum west of the Mississippi: [The Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento, CA.]

At that time, William’s work was chosen out of over 800 California artists and the same year was also acknowledged by Sacramento Galleries with the “Rising Star Award” – an award offered once a year to upcoming artists from Northern California and selected by a consortium of the main Gallery participants in and around Sacramento. Since that time his work has appeared in various publications (listed) and numerous Galleries as well as juried shows such as the Sausalito Art Festival in addition to the Kingsley Exhibit. (The Kingsley Art Club is the oldest Art club in the West as well.)

Spencer also had a One Man Show at the Art Box Gallery in the Roppongi Art district of Tokyo, Japan. His work was featured at the time in Sacramento Magazines’ “BEST OF Sacramento” issue. A yearly issue where the Best of numerous categories from the area gets a featured article. (Art, restaurants, Philanthropists, etc.)

Spencer recently described his work: “I have recognized for many years that my work is mostly effective on some subconscious level to most people – including myself. This is one reason I am constantly discovering new things about my own work. One of the most important discoveries has been that if I use familiar images in ways I am not accustomed to seeing – the work will create subconscious associations. I know that Memory is triggered through nostalgia – even when I am unable to define it or understand why. I think this is an important and continually evolving aspect of my work.

It is also true that throughout my body of work, there has apparently been a continuous thread even when on the surface the varied works may appear to be dissimilar. My work has been termed dynamic for a long time. I think this is partly because of the strong edges, and the textured touchable surfaces in addition (often) to my use of bold color. Collectors have told me that something often seems familiar but aren’t able to exactly say why this is so.

I think that many important aspects of Human experience are somehow constructed of, or supported by the way our subconscious minds collect and visually process repeated form – even if that ‘form’ seems random. Not only Humans – but living things in general respond to repeated forms and recognize patterns on a deeply subconscious level. I think this is because form is associated with deep collective memory – and that this may be especially true when that form is repeated. If a work of art is stopped short of obvious explanation, then the imagination is permitted to take the viewer in an unaccustomed direction. If my work takes me in an unaccustomed direction I think the work will more likely carry a personal meaning for anyone who views it. It’s important to me that each person takes away their own meaning.

My works are predominantly Acrylic, sometimes Oil and an occasional encaustic stabilized beeswax on specially Plastered Eucalyptus Panels. Often included is Pencil work, sometimes Collage from manipulated photo work, Silk screen (either hand silk screened or Digital screening) and stenciling. I also use things like Windex and cold wax in the plaster. Each painting comes with special hangers.

Since 1991 William Spencer III has painted and sold over 1200 paintings and Belleza Gallery is responsible for sale of well over half of that number.

– W Spencer III

One Man Exhibits:

  • Horvath Bass Galleries – Sacramento
  • Medusa Gallery – Sacramento
  • William Spencer III Gallery – Sacramento
  • Art Box Gallery – Roppongi – Tokyo
  • San Ygancio Ltd. – Los Angeles Art
  • Expo Sausalito Art Festival – Sausalito, California
  • Kingsley Art Exhibition – Curated by Whitney Museum of Art Curator (at the Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento California – the oldest Art Museum west of the Mississippi.)

Current Exhibits:

  • Belleza Fine Art- Bisbee, AZ
  • Turquoise Tortoise – Sedona, AZ
  • Coopers Art Gallery – Carefree, AZ
  • Envision Gallery – Taos NM
  • LKG Contemporary –Scottsdale, AZ
  • Jane Hamilton Fine Art – Tucson, AZ
  • Manos Gallery, Tubac, AZ
  • Tucson Guide – Fall 2007 -[on The Cover]
  • Sunstorm Fine Arts – Southern CA
  • Art Expo Preview magazine
  • Décor – National Art Magazine
  • Sacramento – The ‘Best of the City’ issue
  • On The Wings- Sacramento Art review
  • LUXE magazine, Jan. 2015, Scottsdale, AZ
  • Bisbee Marquee- Bisbee, AZ
  • Phoenix Home and Garden, Feb. 2004
  • Diggs Magazine- Tucson, AZ Oct 2002
  • Arizona’s Gold – Hardback – 2006
View Art
Gerald Becker

Jerry Becker won his first art award at the age of seven. It was a second place ribbon in an all city art exhibition in Tacoma, Washington. He studied at the Cornish School of Allied arts in Seattle. Becker has taught art at several community Colleges and has conducted numerous watercolor workshops in the Northwest & Southwest Areas. He has been a member in several art groups including South Arizona WatercolorGuild, the Whiskey Painters of America, Puget Sound Group of Painters, and the Western Federation of Watercolor Societies. Becker is the winner of over fifty awards in juried shows and has had over 65 one man shows, including a showing at the Charles 7 Emma Fry Museum in Seattle. He has studied with many of America’s finest watercolorists, including Millard Sheets, Robert Woods, and Milford Zorne.

Artist’s Statement : I have painted in many different styles, both realistic abstract & semi Abstract. I enjoy semi-abstract the most; trying to bring out subject matter in a different way. stressing the feeling of ambiguous space has always interested me the most. I also enjoy the loose free realistic landscapes.

View Art
David Berridge

“I want viewers to have more than a pleasing image to look at.
I want them to experience what I felt in the creation of the work.”

Bisbee artist David Berridge continues to accumulate awards and recognition:
David Berridge started his career as an artist 35 years ago while working on a cattle ranch in Northern Arizona. He would finish the days work on the ranch, settle down, put a cutting board on his lap and commence to drawing western art scenes.

“Folks seemed to be drawn to my work right from the get-go…” Dave says…”I remember when I took my first “real” pieces of artwork into Husberg’s Gallery in Sedona, Arizona 35 years ago, most of them (Dave’s art) ended up having a sold “red dot” on them before I left the gallery.”
“I was just a punk kid and didn’t realize what a big deal it was when the Favell Museum of Western Art purchased 3 of my pieces for permanent display as an example of “Fine American Western Art.”

A lot of time, galleries, shows and exhibitions have passed since then, but one thing remains the same, a great following and appreciation for David Berridge’s artwork. He now calls Bisbee Arizona his home and shows exclusively at the Belleza Fine Art Gallery (www.bellezagallery.org) in Bisbee.

David’s work these days is very reminiscent of the “Early California Impressionists.”

“My work has been generally regarded as “impressionist” in style for the past 20 years or so, but lately I think I’ve gone truly “turn of the past century” impressionist and I believe it is in no small part due to the inspiration of the tremendous 1906 Arts and Crafts masterpiece (the landmark Greenway House in Warren) that Karen (Dave’s wife of 38 years) and I are fortunate
enough to own. “Everywhere I look is inspiration….peoples hearts went into the work of their hands….which is what I’ve always wanted to do with my artwork.”

Apparently that is exactly what David is accomplishing…. Just recently a national publication, “the Artist’s magazine” ran a feature article on …”6 SMALL towns from coast to coast that are
BIG on art.” Bisbee Arizona was one of their picks and David Berridge’s painting “Tin Roof” was chosen to represent the area.

In June 0f 2005 the Oil Pastel Society, an international society had it’s 2005 show and competition. David’s piece “Shadow’d Grasses” was awarded first place and as published in the August, 2005 issue of “American Artist” magazine.

How does David feel about his art? “It’s what I do, and I believe it’s what I’m meant to do, and for that I’m very thankful. It is truly my “Great Therapy.” “It means the world to me for people to love my art. I have a great feeling of accomplishment.”

To see David’s work online visit www.bellezagallery.org

To see David’s work in person visit the Belleza Fine Art Gallery at 27 Main Street, Bisbee, Az. Belleza is owned and operated by the Women’s Transition Project, a non profit serving homeless women and children. David is one of Belleza’s featured artists…..

“You always see art. It’s always in front of you.”

He’s been known to call himself a “cheesehead from Vancouver, B.C.” (that’s right, cheeseheads aren’t limited to Wisconsin). He obtained U.S. citizenship as a young adult and then joined the U.S. Air Force. He and his wife Karen have been traveling around the United States ever since.

Before his career as an artist took off, David worked on a cattle ranch near Sedona, Arizona. He was strongly influenced by Western life and the countryside and continued to draw in his free time. David says he was constantly goaded by family and friends to show his work somewhere. He finally took a handful of drawings to Alan Husberg’s Fine Art Gallery in Sedona. Husberg told him to go home and draw on better quality paper.

For the next ten years he exhibited realistic compositions of life on the ranch, including a series of limited edition wildlife prints. Then his work began to lose its challenge, David decided it was time to develop and expand his artwork in a new direction with a completely new medium, oil pastel.
David’s technique, generally regarded as “impressionist”, displays a keen sense of light and shadow. A brilliant palette and dramatic use of color characterize this difficult medium. A mark from an oil pastel stick is permanent. Because of its creamy properties, oil pastel is susceptible to overblending and can easily be overworked by the uninitiated. Unlike painting in oil or acrylic, there is no room for error.
David and his wife Karen enjoy gardening, wildlife, and the serenity of life in Bisbee, Arizona.

Selected List of Exhibitions and Representation

Berozkina Gallery, Kirkland, WA
History of the World Gallery, Camano Island, WA
E.A.F.A. 21st Annual Exhibition, Seattle, WA
Nelson/Rovzar Gallery, Kirkland, WA
Island Artists International, Guemes Island, WA
Favell Museum of Western Art, Klamath Falls, OR
Husbergs Fine Art Gallery, Sedona, AZ
Quail Ridge Gallery, Sedona, AZ
Covington Fine Arts Gallery, Fort Worth, TX
Elk City Fine Arts Center, Elk City, OK
Clarkdale Art Museum, Clarkdale, AZ
Anderson Fine Arts Gallery, LaConner, WA
Northern Lights Gallery, Anchorage, AK


1989 BA Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology


1946, Vancouver, BC

View Art
Kim Chesney

Kim Painter Chesney – Artist Statement

Traveling over the last several decades to artistically relevant cities like Hong Kong, Tokyo, Nairobi, Athens, Rome and Mexico City have had a major influence on my love affair with mixed media encaustic. My work embodies a modern day connection to processes that been practiced for 1,000’s of years.

Around 100 AD, the Greeks and the Romans were the first to explore using beeswax to preserve and create art, now called “encaustic” meaning to burn in.

The exquisite parchments I use in my mixed-media pieces are fabricated in many countries like Thailand, Korea, China, Japan and Mexico. The fascinating techniques used to make many of them have been handed down for millenniums.

Daniella Woolf , encaustic guru, mirrors my personal sentiments about the glory of being a mixed-media artist:

“For a mixed-media artist, encaustic is a dream come true. All the media I have worked in come together in grand profusion with encaustic.”

The joy I feel when creating and sharing my art taps into my mental, physical and emotional well-being to almost euphoric proportions. The historical relevance resonates with me and my centuries old Italian heritage, connecting my heart to the beauty of art.

View Art
Tom Conner

(b. 1967 ) 

Raised in North Carolina, Tom attended the School of Design at North Carolina State University. After college Tom moved west and found his true home in the deserts and forests of Arizona. Working in oils, he seeks to convey the beauty of the Southwest and its relationship to the human spirit. For him this means exploring the ephemeral dance of light on these timeless landscapes. Much like the infinite expressions each human face is capable of, so too the play of sun and shadow on the land reveals the emotional intent of each work. It provides an inexhaustible source of exploration. 

Working both en plein air and in studio works, Tom and his wife divide their time between Phoenix and Prescott AZ 

Member: OPA, APAP & Sonoran Arts League 
2019 Bisbee Plein Air Festival: Best of Show

View Art
Bob Ichter

R.John Ichter is an award-winning artist who is quickly captivating the art scene wherever his work is shown. Also known as “Bob” to his friends, Ichter’s romantic pastels are richly colored and hand-rubbed onto lushly textured black suede archival board. The strengths of Ichter’s pastels include vibrant, saturated colors and strong compositions. According to Ichter, each piece is designed to evoke a certain time of day and to transport the viewer to another place. Autumn and dusk are favorite themes, which have been inspired by landscapes from around the world. You may find yourself gazing into the rolling hills of the French countryside, strolling along a windy Normandy beach, exploring a pathway through a North Carolina Blue Ridge forest, gazing at a dragonfly resting upon a patch of waterlillies in Claude Monet’s gardens at Giverny or floating along the river Seine. Be it sunrise, sunset or a full moonlit night, you are certain to want to return again and again.

Investors and collectors range from well known celebrities to Fortune 500 companies such as The Coca-Cola Company, Bank ofAmerica , Equifax and Accenture . As one gallery who represents Ichter writes, “… Ichter is a superb artist both in pastel and watercolor. He has consistently provided our gallery with work of the highest quality. His work often sells the day it arrives at our gallery and we always have a waiting list of clients interested in seeing his new works. In addition, since 1992 he has ranked as our number one or number two artist.” Al Alshuler, editor of Design South Magazine, writing in a feature article, called Ichter “an undeniable talent” and his paintings “real show stoppers”.

View Art
Mary Martin

Mary Martin is a plein air oil artist reknowned for wildlife and landscapes scenes, especially that of the beloved quail. Because she so captures the essence of desert life with precise technical skill, she is sought after throughout the State of Arizona

View Art
Sandra Mears

Sandy has been involved with art since childhood. After a break to raise a family, she went back to it and made it a priority. She has owned and operated an antique shop and a frame shop, and through it all has maintained an interest in painting.

Primarily working on stretched canvas, she has tried her hand at many other supports, but gets the results she wants with canvas.

Her paintings have been called ethereal, mystical and peaceful. Sharing these traits with others is her joy. To touch another soul is a profound moment.

Being retired gives her time now to explore, create, experiment and evolve, and the theme is always peace and connection.

View Art
Barbara Ross

Her art career began informally at age 6, and her passion for art has never wavered. Her artistic batteries are often charge when simply talking about art and painting. “I don’t start with an idea and put it down. I let the ideas take shape as I apply the paint, “ she explains. “I often squeeze paint directly on the canvas and just see what happens. Because the drive is so intense, I often finish a painting in one sitting.” Barb adds that painting for her is a form of meditation, escaping into another world, and letting that world emit through colors on the board.

Born in Bisbee, Arizona, Barb’s career has been laced with art. Upon completing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art Education from Arizona State University, she taught art at Phoenix Union High School prior to moving to Grand Junction, Colorado where she became a partner in the Terrace Art Gallery and Frame Shop. In addition to ownership, Barb fed her desire to teach others through her instructed courses in painting.

Many pieces of her work are parts of private collections held in California, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado and Costa Rica. In addition to abstract forms, she has done several commissioned portraits. Even during a four-year voyage through the Caribbean on a 37’ sloop, Barb continued to work on her art, and she has since returned to it full-time. She makes her home in Sierra Vista, Arizona.

View Art
Clement Scott

Clement was trained at Watts Atelier in Encinitas California. There he studied painting and drawing from life as well as concepts in illustration, landscape, perspective and more. He is inspired by many artists and illustrators of the past and present. Clement strives to create work that is appealing in subject matter and in execution. He resides in Bisbee Arizona where he also keeps a studio. He also teaches drawing and painting workshops frequently.

View Art
Lisa Sprietsma

Lisa Galloway Sprietsma was raised in rural Wisconsin surrounded by horses and cows. After much traveling, she settled in Arizona. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Arizona. She lives on the San Pedro River with her husband, two children, horses, dogs, cats, and chickens.

Lisa has been painting the still life for many years. “Historically the still life and its components have symbolized many things. Abundance, life, mortality, beauty and a celebration of the seasons are just a few of those. I do not align myself with these historical symbols, and instead search for my own meaning. This seems to evolve with each painting.”

Lisa paints most of her still lifes from life. She prefers this because it is easier to see the reflective light throughout the piece.


Born: November 23, 1970 in Minneapolis, Minnesota

Education: 2001 BFA University of Arizona Tucson, AZ

View Art

Lou Anne Sterbick Nelson

Lou Anne Sterbick Nelson is a former lawyer turned curator and artist. She opened Belleza Art Gallery 20 years ago and has been painting ever since.

Her work is oil on canvas and panel and most depict her mystical and heartfelt take on what she sees in front of her.

Her work is in collections across the globe and is forever stretching her vision to include unique subjects and technique.

View Art
Charles Thomas

b1960, began his art career as a graphic designer in the early 1980s. He spent twelve years as a sought after illustrator before devoting his energies full time to fine art in 1998. His work has been widely published and has also been exhibited by the Society of Illustrators Annual of American Illustration. As a fine artist, Thomas’ work has been recognized by the Oil Painters of America and the American Impressionist Society, where he has been a finalist in their national exhibitions.

Selected Awards

  • 2019 Oil Painters of America, Finalist, Western Regional Exhibition
  • 2019 Oil Painters of America, Finalist, National Juried Exhibition
  • 2018 American Impressionist Society, Finalist, National Juried Exhibition
  • 2017 Southwest Art Magazine Award of Excellence, Phippen Museum Western Art Show St
  • 2017 St. George Art Museum, Purchase Award
  • 2016 American Impressionist Society, Finalist, National Juried Exhibition
  • 2016 Bisbee Plein Air First Place
View Art
Kaia Thomas

(b. 1973 )

Raised in the Pacific Northwest, now residing in Arizona, Kaia Thomas is a visual artist working primarily in oils. Her theme is beauty, and it’s her expressed perception of this beauty that is found to instill an emotional response in people viewing her art. Working on location and from life is one of the ways she explores that direct emotional response to her subjects and this in turn has influenced her studio work, reflecting that rawness of rendering in real time. She chooses to work with tools such as the palette knife or painting wedge which encourage a fresh and confident approach to painting that breathes movement and life into her work. Kaia has participated in several fine art shows and painting events including the Bisbee Plein Air Festival in Arizona, Escalante Canyon Arts Festival in Utah, guest artist at the Maynard Dixon Campout in Utah, juried into the Miniatures & More show at the Albuquerque Museum of Art in New Mexico, juried into the American Women Artists Annual Online Spring Show, was a finalist in the Southwest Art Magazine’s Artistic Excellence competition, and most recently, accepted into the show, In Full Sun: American Women Artist Illuminate The Haggin Museum, at the Haggin Museum in Stockton, CA. Her work has received top recognition, including 3 Best of Shows, and her work can be found in multiple public and private collections throughout the United States and abroad.

Artist Statement

“Painting is my passion, and what I aim for in my paintings is a sense of place. To somehow capture and convey that unspeakable and nameless beauty that provokes an emotional response in me. There is nothing more rewarding than when a viewer connects with a painting and feels a part of it. I find these inspirations everywhere, sometimes it will be the simplest, every day things that catch my eye. Nature has been, and always will be what excites me most as an artist. It is a deep well of inspiration to draw from.”

View Art
Renee Vance

Accomplished painter and sculptor, Renee Vance [American – born 1954] is best known for her life-like and ethereal portraits. At times, Vance’s iconic portraits have honored such historical figures as Rodin’s pupil and lover, Camille Claudel (1864-1938), a Yankton Nakota writer, educator and classical violinist. Using the carefully honed skills acquired while studying art and scientific /medical illustration at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Vance applies sensitive brush strokes and gold leaf backgrounds to execute her portraits, Realistic and classical with a luminous quality, her renditions of people from various cultural backgrounds honor diversity as well as universality. “Through my art, I focus on connectedness of humankind. I want to pay tribute to the physical as well as the spiritual attributes of my subjects.” For the past twenty-five years, she has Exhibited in galleries in Seattle, Colorado, New Mexico, and North Carolina; her work is in many private and public collections. Vance’s home and studio are in a remote desert area in Southern Arizona.

“I have always been aware of a connection uniting all who travel through this life. Whether it appears as vibrations of light or the resonating energy of music, our world and our lives are joined in a timeless flow.

My goal as an artist is to convey this connection. Depicting the gesture and movement of a hand or the light in the eyes of someone who lived long ago, the message is continuous in my work: WE ALL SHARE IN THE VIBRATIONS OF LIFE.”

View Art
Ji Ye

coming soon

View Art