Thomas Kitts

Artist Bio

Thomas Kitts lives in Portland, Oregon. He graduated from the Kansas City Art Institute in 1984, after which he returned home to paint en plein air in the Pacific Northwest and California. 

Thomas is both inspired and exhilarated by the way light plays across a landscape and he has devoted over 27 years to capturing it in oil. Thomas prefers to paint directly from life for its honesty and immediacy, incorporating alla prima techniques developed by master artists such as Sargent, Sorolla, and Zorn. 

Thomas is an active member of the Laguna Plein Air Painters Association, the California Art Club, the Oil Painters of America, and the American Impressionist Society. He travels extensively and maintains an active and distinguished exhibition history – one which includes the Laguna Art Museum, the Maritime Museum of Curacao, the Academy Museum of EastonOil Painters of America National & Regional ExhibitionsArts for the Parks Top 100, and three New York Art Expos. Thomas has been commissioned by such prestigious entities as the Publix Corporation, the Mariott Corporation, the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, and the Kaiser-Permanente Collection. His work is collected throughout North America. 

*** Thomas Kitts can be found at both Palm Springs and Portland Galleries **


For more information, please visit: or

When I paint outdoors, directly from life, I am always fascinated by how light can play across my subject, and how at times it is capable of fracturing the very thing I see. We may believe we are looking at a smashed up log jam caught by the brush, or a rushing stream digging out a resting point at a lower level, or rocks piled above and below the water line – but in truth, it is the light we see, and it, like the sun, remains in constant flow.

-Thomas Jefferson Kitts​

Artist Statement

Artist Awards

Quick Overview of 2011 Competitions, Invitationals & Exhibitions
2011 12th Annual American Impressionists Society
2011 13th Annual Laguna Beach Plein Air Invitational 
2011 Plein Air Curacao | Best International Artist
2011 Plein Air Easton | Best New Artist
2011 Telluride Plein Air
2011 Los Gatos Plein Air
2011 Carmel Art Festival | 1st Place & Mayor’s Choice 

Select Group Shows
12th Annual Juried Exhibition | American Impressionist Society Mountain Song Gallery, Carmel California 
Oil Painters of America 19th Annual National Exhibition 2010 Legacy Gallery, Scottsdale Arizona
Top 100 Artist Show & Arts for the Parks National Exhibition Tour National Parks Academy of the Arts, Jackson, Wyoming, 2005-2006 
New York Art Expos: 2002, 2001, 2000 New York, New York 
East Meets West Chetwynd Stapelton Gallery, Portland, Oregon, 1998 
Oil Painters of America, 7th National Exhibition P & C Gallery-Georgetown, Washington D.C., 1998 
Oil Painters of America, West Coast Regional Show Jones & Terwilliger Gallery, Carmel, California, 1997 
Messages From the Interior Oregon School of Arts and Crafts, Portland, Oregon, 1997 
Oregon Landscape Painters Chetwynd Stapelton Gallery, Portland, Oregon, 1996 
Pacific Northwest College of Art Faculty Exchange Salem, Oregon, 1993 
Your Show of Shows, Society of Illustrators New York, New York, 1990 

Select Solo Shows 
Visual Meditations on the Northwest Landscape Canessa Park Gallery, San Francisco, California, 1995 
First Light Over Sauvie Island Chetwynd Stapelton Gallery, Portland, Oregon, 1994 
Sauvie Island & Other Changing Oregon Landscapes Le Meitour Gallery, Portland, Oregon, 1993
Landscapes, Cityscapes & People, Le Meitour Gallery, Portland, Oregon, 1992 
Paintings From the Last Six Years Le Meitour Gallery, Portland, Oregon, 1990 

Select Awards and Recognitions 
Best International Artist Plein Air Curacao, 2011 
Best New Artist Plein Air Easton Plein Air, 2011 
1st Place & Mayor’s Choice 19th Annual Carmel Art Festival, 2011 
Honorable Mention Laguna Plein Air Painters Association. 2010 
Honorable Mention Telluride Plein Air. 2010 
Top 100 Artist, Arts for the Parks National Parks Academy of the Arts, Jackson, Wyoming, 2005 
Award of Merit Connecticut Art Director’s Club, Connecticut, 1989
Award of Merit Oregon Art Annual, Salem, Oregon, 1988
Silver Medal Illustrator’s 28th Exhibition, Society of Illustrators, New York, New York, 1986 
Gold Medal Art Director’s Club, New York, New York, 1986 
Honorable Mention Society of Publication Designers, New York, New York, 1986 

Select History of Galleries, Expos and Sales Affiliations 
New York Art Expo 2001, 2002, 2003 
Artifacts Gallery
, Cambria, California 
Desert Art Source, Palm Desert, California 
SoHo Fine Art Gallery, Las Vegas, Nevada 
Collector’s Editions, Kauai & Hawaii 
The Lanning Gallery, Sedona, Arizona 1997 to 1999
Rip Caswell Gallery, Jackson Hole, Wyoming, 1997 to 2001 
Carlton Gallery, Carlton, Oregon, 1996 to 1998
Chetwynd Stapelton Gallery, Portland, Oregon, 1994 to 1999 
Le Meitour Gallery, Portland, Oregon, 1990 to 1994
Gango Gallery, Portland, Oregon, 1988 to 1989
The Augustine Collection, Portland, Oregon, 1987 to 1988 

Select Corporate/Institutional Collections & Private Commissions
Publix Corporation, Telluride, 2011
Mariott Corporation, Palm Desert, 1998
Portland Trail Blazers, Paul Allen Foundation, Portland, Oregon 
Kaiser-Permamente Collection, Portland, Oregon 

Professional Affilliations 
Artist Member, Oil Painters of America
Associate Member, California Art Club
Artist Member, American Society of Impressionists
Artist Member, Laguna Plein Air Painters Association
Instructor, Pacific Northwest College of Art, 1990 to 2000 
Artist Member, Society of Illustrators, New York, 1986 to 1994

Arts-related Education 
Bachelor of Fine Arts, 1984, Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, Missouri​

Palm Springs Location 

Brian Marki Fine Art & Framing is located at 170 East Arenas Road, between South Indian Canyon Drive and South Palm Canyon Drive. 

Phone: 760-327-5777 

Hours 11 am to 5 pm Monday through Saturday, closed Sunday. Available by appointment on request.

We are happy to meet with you by appointment any time.