"I remember the first time I got lost in the process of painting. I was 10 years old and visiting my aunt for the weekend. She took me to the toy store and told me to pick out whatever I wanted. I chose a paint-by-number kit of a horse grazing in a field. I began painting as soon as we got back from the store and did not stop until I was forced to eat dinner. Time stopped - time flew by. I'm not sure how to describe what happened - I just know that I was transported to a place where time was irrelevant. And 40 years later, that is still happening, every time I paint." Melissa Tevere, 2017
Tevere's work is not about 100% accurately portraying the way a place or a person looks. It is about capturing the way a person or a place feels. Tevere's paintings illicit emotion in the viewer by pushing color, shape, contrast, movement and light. Former Philadelphia Inquirer art critic, Victoria Donahue, has described Tevere's work as "enticingly wistful".
Melissa Tevere graduated from Temple University's Tyler School of Art with her Bachelor's Degree in Painting. While there, she spent a semester studying abroad in Rome, Italy. (She has been trying to get back there to live and paint every since!) There, she discovered her love for the landscape. While in her Junior Year, she also received a prestigious fellowship to attend Yale University's Summer Program in Norfolk, Connecticut.
In 2007, Tevere founded MamaCITA, A Mother's Cooperative in the Arts - a well-regarded artists cooperative based in Philadelphia. From 2012 - 2015, she served as the Art Editor of Philadelphia Stories. Tevere is currently the Director of Special Events and Conferences at Appel Farm Art and Music Center. She is the single mom of a teenage boy and girl, Jacob and Chloe. Despite her busy schedule, she is a prolific painter. In any and all of her free time, she paints.