Charles Smith

Charles W. Smith

“Visions in Life”

Mixed Media Paintings

November 1 – December 30, 2016


Charles W. Smith, born and raised in Newark, NJ. He graduated Newark Arts High School with top academic honors and with scholarships to Cooper Union, University of Chicago, and Harvard University. He earned his BA in Fine Arts from Harvard in 1970, and studied for several semesters at Drew Theological Seminary in the Masters of Divinity Program before earning a Masters of Theological Studies at Eastern Theological Seminary, Lynchburg, VA in 2011. He has permanent teaching certifications in Elementary Education (K-8) and Art Education (K-12).

His teaching and artistic career has spanned more than 40 years during which he exhibited in group shows with the National Conference of Artists while earning commissions for private collections. His success as a visual artist began when, as a senior of Newark Arts High School, he won the Mary G. Roebling Award for Oil Painting in a state-wide competition.

He has taught art courses for the Newark Museum, Montclair School District, Newark School District, Jersey City School District, East Orange School District, Catholic Community Services, and Essex County College. For a decade in the 1980’s, as Art Editor of “The Union Mail”, a US postal workers newspaper, he won several prestigious awards for editorial cartooning from the International Labor Press Association and NY Labor Press Council.

The artists of the Italian Renaissance and the masters of 20th Century painting inspired Charles to work in the areas of representational painting, portraiture, drawing, illustration, and abstract art. His friends fondly call him a “Renaissance Man” due to his many interests and pursuits, especially in the arts.

In 2005, he was inspired by the powerful life story of ex-gang leader Stanley “Tookie” Williams, reformed co-founder of the notorious Crips Street Gang who was wrote 10 books against street gangs and violence while serving a life sentence in prison. Charles created a three-dimensional, multi-media installation called “Life From Death”.

In 2006, he created another major work to commemorate the tragic events of September 11, 2001. These three paintings are entitled, “The 9/11 World Trade Center Series”. Both art projects have been exhibited in New Jersey venues such as the Les Malamut Gallery and Municipal Building, Union,NJ, The Eleta J. Caldwell Gallery, Essex County College Gallery, Street Warriors Headquarters, Newark, and The New Black Panther Party Headquarters, Trenton.

Currently, Charles serves on the Trustee Board of the Newark School of the Arts as Vice President, External Affairs.


Charles works out his studio at home. He can be reached: