Denise Stewart-Sanabria was born in Massachusetts and received her BFA in Painting from the University of Massachusetts/Amherst. She has lived in Knoxville, TN since 1986.
Stewart-Sanabria paints both hyper-realist “portraits” of everything from produce to subversive jelly donuts. The anthropomorphic narratives often are reflections on human behavior. She is also known for her life size charcoal portrait drawings on plywood, which are cut out, mounted on wood bases, and staged in conceptual installations. She is a recipient of the 2019 Tennessee Arts Commission Individual Artist Grant for her work on wood.
Recent solo exhibits include: “Encounters”, at the Huntsville Museum of Art in Huntsville Alabama, “Virtual Reality”, John P. Weatherhead Gallery, University of Saint Francis, Fort Wayne, IN, “Quantum Continuum”: Rebecca Randall Bryan Gallery, Coastal Carolina University, Conway, SC, and “Another Virtual Reality”, New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art at the University of Southern Indiana, and ENCOUNTERS: Denise Stewart-Sanabria, Huntsville Museum of Art, Huntsville, AL.
Her work is included in various museums, private, and corporate collections including: The Tennessee State Museum, The Evansville Museum of Art in Indiana, The Knoxville Museum of Art, The Huntsville Museum of Art, Notre Dame of Maryland University, Firstbank TN, Pinnacle Banks, Omni and Opryland Hotels, Scripps Networks, Knoxville Botanical Gardens, Jewelry Television, TriStar Energy, the Atlanta Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank/Nashville office, the Aslan Foundation, The Ayers Foundation, and the corporate offices of McGhee Tyson Airport.