Pictures from my MSV show / Upcoming "Women in the Arts" Panel Info

Hello! The Women in the Arts panel discussion at the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley is happening this Sunday, August 4 in Winchester, VA. Again, please join us for this interesting and timely discussion, moderated by the National Museum of Women in the Arts’ curator, Kathryn Wat. I am especially excited to meet her and also Celeste Fetta of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. What a great opportunity to hear from these accomplished women in the museum world…in Winchester! Please join us to show our appreciation to their dedication in their field. Make your reservation here!

Ghosts of a Forgotten Landscape Opening was Amazing!

I did say I was worried that no one would show up? Ha, I’m a little chagrined. We had about 150 attendants! It’s from a bit of insecurity that brought that trepidation. However, I have heard from many artists that this is an all too common fear, even if irrational. Below are some pictures if you are curious and have not seen them yet on social media. The show is up for almost a year, so if you are in the area it would be an honor if you would visit. My hope is that the show will encourage conversation about what we should do about our historic barns. In addition to that, you can enjoy trying to follow my philosophical concepts that emerged from an inquiry into man and nature, as symbolized by the barns.

Thanks so much for supporting me on this artistic journey. It’s funny, the upcoming panel discussion really hits home. I am 56, and because I gave up so much of my life to nurture others, I feel like there is so much time lost! One of the reasons for the lack of women artists in Art History is exactly why I did not pursue my own interests for so long. I gave up my identity and lived through others. It is not necessarily a bad choice, but I know now that it was the wrong choice for me and my family. Being a women made that very easy to do. Here is something I wrote about it all.

This is an important issue, so please come to support the MSV with their initiative to address the place of women in professional life as it relates to the world of Art!

With warmest wishes,


Showing my Mom around during the preview.

Showing my Mom around during the preview.

Sally Veach at the MSV.jpg
With Exhibition Director Cory Garman.

With Exhibition Director Cory Garman.

It was so lovely to talk with some people for whom the barns played a big part in their lives. One woman told me she was so moved by the exhibition and shared her story about the loss of her family barn.

It was so lovely to talk with some people for whom the barns played a big part in their lives. One woman told me she was so moved by the exhibition and shared her story about the loss of her family barn.

Ghost of a Forgotten Landscape at the MSV.jpg
You’ll have to come see the paintings in person if you can!

You’ll have to come see the paintings in person if you can!

"Women in the Arts" Panel Discussion August 4 at The MSV

Please join Kathryn Wat (Chief Curator, National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, D.C.), Celeste Fetta (Director of Education, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts), Nick Powers (Curator of Collections, Museum of the Shenandoah Valley), Winchester artist Kelly Stavely, and me, Sally Veach, for a panel discussion about Woman in the Arts at the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, Sunday, August 4, 2019 at 2:00 PM.

From the MSV:

Inspired by the women who contributed to the success of Tiffany Studios as seen in Tiffany Glass: Painting with Color and Light, this panel discussion will explore the challenges women faced historically in finding a career in art and examine what has and has not changed. Moderated by Kathryn Wat of the National Museum of Women in the Arts, with contemporary landscape painter Sally Veach, owner of Tin Top Art and Handmade Kerry Stavely, Celeste Fetta, Director of Education at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, and MSV Curator of Collections Nick Powers.

Register to attend by August 2. For tickets click here!

MSV Members: Free; all others $15 (includes MSV admission). Pre-register by August 2; walk-ins welcome as space permits. Register online or call 540-662-1473, ext. 240.

Come meet the panelists and enjoy participating in this timely discussion!

It's Final: Solo Show at the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley for "Barns of Shenandoah"!

Autumn Resurrection  by Sally Veach, Oil on Canvas, 48” X 48”, to be exhibited at The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, July 2019

Autumn Resurrection by Sally Veach, Oil on Canvas, 48” X 48”, to be exhibited at The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, July 2019


Hello and Happy New Year!

I am truly honored (and can now officially announce) that there will be a solo show of my paintings at the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, Winchester, VA. Opening July 13, 2019 and running for about one year, the show will focus on my Barns of Shenandoah series. Various barn-inspired paintings from different stages of the series will be exhibited, and the Shenandoah County Historical Society plans to include background material on my inspiration: the actual barns of Shenandoah.

I am inspired by the landscape of the Virginias. The barns are an essential part of the landscape in Shenandoah County, VA and they have come to symbolize for me the intersection of Man and Nature. The barns of the Shenandoah Valley are on the 2018 list of Virginia’s Most Endangered Historical Places by Preservation Virginia, a Richmond organization of great repute and history. It is my hope that this show, as well as sharing my work with the region, calls attention to Shenandoah County’s valuable, historic resource.

A circa 1814 barn in Shenandoah County.

A circa 1814 barn in Shenandoah County.

Even though the barns are quickly deteriorating (more are lost every year) it is estimated that there still are about 1000 barns standing, including many in structurally sound condition. You can read more about the barns, and the historic survey that is being conducted by John Adamson, on the Historical Society’s website.

The nature of our historic barns makes them endangered. Their small size, their natural materials, and the disappearance of subsistence farming has made them obsolete. It is only because of the love and reverence for our barns and the hard working, pioneering heritage they represent, that we still have them at all. Case in point: they do not get torn down—they fall down. Built to last, they are a beloved symbol of a bygone era, hearkening to the Germanic immigrants who settled this land, most with the same names of folks living Shenandoah County today.

Furthermore, our barns are unique! The sheer density and historic age of the county’s barns are truly remarkable. If our community (with help from those living elsewhere too!) endeavors to intervene and prevent the eventual disappearance of the barns, we will have a unique, rich, historic treasure to claim for many years to come. If we do something, decades from now a source of wonder awaits—for residents and visitors alike.

I have a vision for the awareness, cultural identity, and philanthropy needed to save Shenandoah County barns. Barn owners need help, and a way to provide financial assistance needs to be found. The barns are historic, financial burdens to barn owners. Helping barn owners helps us all by preserving these cultural symbols of our county’s heritage. If we intervene, years from now Shenandoah County will be one of the few places where historic barns can still be seen. What a joy it will be to continue to live among those majestic sentinels, symbols of what these early immigrants wrought.

If you or someone you know would like to assist in these efforts, please forward this email, contact me or the Shenandoah County Historical Society.

See you in July!


I was featured in the Artist Spotlight at Anne Neilson Fine Art

Hello and Happy Thursday, all! A few weeks ago, I was interviewed by my gallery, Anne Neilson Fine Art for a feature on their blog. So happy to share this with you!



We are so excited to be representing Sally Veach, a new artist to Anne Neilson Fine Art Gallery! She is a fellow mountain dweller from the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, and has truly been a joy to get to know.

She’s a passionate, innovative artist who expresses herself, her thoughts, ideas and inspirations not only in her words written here, but also in her expressionistic paintings. Her work is especially meaningful as her Barns of Shenandoah series depicts “the tragedy of historic barns and the fact that they are slowly returning to nature”.

The preservation that occurs by making these paintings is the essence of the artists surroundings; the beauty, color and energy that occurs within nature. Her depictions thrill the viewer with the way air and earth come together to move nature, and also allow it to reclaim. Barns come from trees that belong to the soil, and in turn barns rest upon that soil, that ultimately takes back what is theirs.

Read on to learn more about Sally Veach: as an artist, her likes and her life!

Hometown: Chatham, NJ

Currently Living: Woodstock, VA


When did you start your career in art?

Phase one of my art career started as a teenager when I began to complete commissions, earned a BFA in Illustration from Syracuse University, and continued in the graphic arts for a few years after graduation.  Phase two began about five years ago, when I reconnected with my artist identity and started my current, fine art practice in painting.

How long have you known you wanted to be an artist? 

I knew I “was” an artist from about age 11.  There was no question in my mind about “wanting to be”!  About five years ago, I then made a decision that I “wanted to be” an artist!  Sometimes it’s a strange, topsy-turvy world.

Describe your aesthetic in three words:

Gestural, Expressive, Colorism

Describe your artistic process and preparation.

My artistic process begins with the intense observation of, and inspiration from the natural landscape surrounding my home in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. The amazing of colors, energy, and atmospheric perspective of our natural world get quickly recorded with my cell phone camera. There are thousands of photos available to rekindle my memories.  I don’t refer to the photos for reference but use them to jog my memory of what was interesting about the scenes. This almost always has to do with color.  So, when I begin a painting, the colors and a basic idea of compositional design serve as the beginning structure.  From there the work takes a course of its own, and I enter a spontaneous period of adding and subtracting elements until I can see a pathway developing.  I’ll continue down that path until there are no more unresolved aspects of the composition, and the painting communicates what I am trying to express.


Favorite piece you’ve painted to date and why?

My favorite piece currently is “Solstice 2”.  I love this painting because it most successfully communicates the colors, gestural expression, and style of working that I am anxious to continue exploring. I feel it is the most “me”!

Solstice 2  by Sally Veach, currently available at ANFA Gallery

Solstice 2 by Sally Veach, currently available at ANFA Gallery

Who inspires you personally and/or professionally?

I am inspired and influenced by the work of Eric Aho, a contemporary, abstract landscape painter from Vermont.  I also love the work of Cy Twombly.  I believe it is the gestural, fresh expression inherent in Twombly’s work that is so intriguing to me. He also practiced right down the valley from me in Lexington, VA.  Personally, I am inspired by my mother who is just now retiring from professional life at the age of 92.  At my age of 56, I hope I have that many more years to grow and develop as an artist!

Headwaters  by Eric Aho

Headwaters by Eric Aho

What challenges do you think exist in the world of fine art?

There is a conflict between the personal expression of an artist and the business of selling the work.

How do you approach/overcome them?

I resolve that conflict by recognizing that the final step in art is communicating with the world by sharing your work with others.  For patrons, the act of collecting art is a wonderful, built-in step that completes the process of being an artist.  But the first order of business is producing pure, authentic work.  The two realms have a symbiotic relationship, but I am careful to focus on exploring my personal interests and inspirations first. If an artist does not keep this priority, then the work becomes contrived and shallow, and by default less compelling to the collector.

Biggest accomplishment to date (personally or professionally)?

Professionally, my biggest accomplishment is being offered an eight month show at the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley in Winchester, Virginia, which is tentatively planned for 2019.  This show will feature my series, Barns of Shenandoah,and is about the endangered, historic barns of Shenandoah County, VA. I have partnered with our local historical society and we are forming a group focused on raising awareness of and preserving the historic barns of Shenandoah County, VA.  I love that I have found a great way to contribute to my community through donating a portion of all barn-related paintings to the historical society.

Ironically, my art practice is probably also my biggest, personal accomplishment.  It was difficult to “face the demons” when reconnecting to the identity of an artist, and to believe that I was worthy to attempt a career in art took a lot of positive self-talk.  It goes to show, dream big and persist!

Photo by Hekyung Parkbarr

Photo by Hekyung Parkbarr

Favorite location to paint/what is your studio like?

I love to paint in my studio, which is in a room above the garage in our home.  It has become a refuge, a place belonging just to me.  It is often messy but I know where everything is!


A random fact about you:

I’m kind of a contradiction. I love to play golf but sing opera.  I love to learn nerdy facts but love to get glammed up for a night out too.

Favorite place to vacation? And/or dream trip?

My favorite place to vacation is the ocean, or any large body of water. My dream trip would be a cozy cottage on a private stretch of natural beach.  Even though I love the mountains, my vacation would be to the beach.

What are you currently reading?

21 Answers for 21st Century Questions by Yuval Noah Harari


What are you currently listening to?

Jolene by Ray Lamontagne

Ray  Lamontagne.jpg

What would you be doing if you were not an artist?

Drowning in my sorrows.

One thing you couldn’t live without?

My two grown children and my husband of 30 years.

If you could switch lives with anyone for a day, who would it be?

Not sure, except that it would have to be someone who never has self-doubt and was free from existential anxiety, lol.  But probably, that person does not exist!

Your all-time favorite artist and/or your favorite emerging artist?

My all-time favorite artist is Eric Aho. I’d have to say that my favorite emerging artist is William McClure, who is also represented by Anne Neilson Fine Art.

Painting XVII   by William McClure  Currently available at  ANFA Gallery

Painting XVII by William McClure

Currently available at ANFA Gallery

Dream commission?

My dream commission would be monumental painting for a large public space or office building. But I’d have to find a bigger studio first!

What do you want your audience to know about your work?

I want my audience to know that every time I paint, I am channeling the beauty and awe of nature through a filter of the anxiety of modern life–the human condition, you could say.  My message is:  Look Up, Remember to Notice Beauty, Remember to Find Joy.  Nature is a poultice for all that ails us and is free for all.


What makes your work unique?

I believe my work is unique in that I use traditional concepts of landscape color theory and composition combined with an abstract expressionist method.  My paintings are landscapes, but very much on the verge of pure abstraction, and I strive to make every mark free with the energy of my body and not contrived or controlled.

Name one goal for your career you’d like to achieve in the next 5 years:

Within the next five years, I would like to achieve a level of confidence in my painting expression to the point where each foray onto the canvas is an act of joy free from self-doubt. And I would like to be part of the conversation in the larger art world.

And She Rises  by Sally Veach, currently available at ANFA Gallery

And She Rises by Sally Veach, currently available at ANFA Gallery

 Come visit us at ANFA Gallery to view some of Sally Veach’s available works, and check out to learn even more about this wonderful woman and look at her entire breathe of work!



Two July Shows in Harrisonburg and Woodstock, VA

Next month, the last two shows that are scheduled for 2018 will be held:  Larkin Arts in Harrisonburg, VA and Muse Vineyards in Woodstock, VA.  Both shows will feature my Barns of Shenandoah series, of which 20% of my proceeds will be donated to the Shenandoah County Historical Society's barn preservation program!  At Larkin Arts, a small selection of 2017 landscapes will also be exhibited. Each show has been carefully curated to exhibit a cohesive selection of my paintings. Attend both for a robust experience of my work. Here is the information on the shows:


"Sally Veach, Barns of Shenandoah & More"

Larkin Arts, Wine-Riner Galleries

July 6-28, 2018

61 Court Square, Harrisonburg, VA  22801

Opening Reception Friday, July 6, 5-8 PM


Start downtown Harrisonburg's First Friday art crawl at Larkin Arts, where my work will be exhibited in both of Larkin Arts' galleries.  Enjoy music and cider by Old Hill.  One gallery will be devoted to Barns of Shenandoah: Returning to Nature series, and one gallery will be devoted to a selection of landscapes from 2017.  Below is an example of a painting from the Barns of Shenandoah: Returning to Nature series, and a 2017 landscape painting in the show:

Returning to Nature    ,   Acrylic on Canvas, 24" X 24"

Returning to NatureAcrylic on Canvas, 24" X 24"

Cloud Seven  , Oil and Mixed Media on Canvas, 34" X 40"

Cloud Seven, Oil and Mixed Media on Canvas, 34" X 40"


"Sally Veach at Muse Vineyards"

July 6-29, 2018

16 Serendipity Lane, Woodstock, VA  22664

Opening Reception Sunday, July 8, 3-5 PM


Come enjoy original art, Muse Vineyards' award-winning wines, and spectacular scenery! Exhibited at Muse will be paintings from the original Barns of Shenandoah series plus two paintings from the new Barns of Shenandoah: Resurrection series.  Below is an example of paintings from the two series:

The Gathering Storm  , Oil on Canvas, 36" X 48"

The Gathering Storm, Oil on Canvas, 36" X 48"

Resurrection 2  , Oil on Canvas, 36" X 36"

Resurrection 2, Oil on Canvas, 36" X 36"

It's been a very busy year, with so many developments and lots of painting!  Since January I've created 26 paintings and sold 17!  I've had five solo shows!  I was able to donate over $1600 to help save Shenandoah County's barns, and am working with the Shenandoah County Historical Society to develop a robust barn preservation program!  I am having conversations with galleries and a museum, too!

There is even more exciting news on the horizon so STAY TUNED!  And above all, please accept my sincere gratitude for supporting me throughout this journey that started back in 2012, with a silly blog about getting back to an artistic life.  Art is central to my core now.  It seems The Art Life (Such As It Is)--now defunct blog--should be changed to simply The Art Life, because I'm living it!  :-)

Looking forward to many more years of ART.  And hope to see you in July!

With Gratitude,