Featured Artist of the Month: Sonia Jackson Summers
February – March 2024
Sonia Jackson Summers received her Bachelors in College Scholars: Illustration and Writing from The University of Tennessee in 2008. During her time at the University of Tennessee, Sonia cartooned for “The Daily Beacon.”
In 2011, Sonia married and relocated to her husband’s hometown of Birmingham, Alabama, and during that time Sonia was commissioned to participate in Vulcan Park and Museum’s public art project called “Vulcans on Parade.” Sonia’s painted Vulcan statues stand on display in two downtown Birmingham businesses. Sonia has work in the permanent collection of The Joy Gallery in Homewood, Alabama and rotating art at the Blue Phrog Gallery in Montevallo, Alabama.
Since moving back to Knoxville with her husband and kids in 2019, Sonia has broadened her scope to include painting en plein air (live on-site landscape painting), as well as competitive sidewalk chalk art/“Madonnari” festivals and sidewalk chalk art commissions, in addition to her fine art, illustration, and murals. Sonia has a deep appreciation for Impressionism, focusing on bridging the relationship between observation and interpretation, impressionistic capabilities of skill and realistic reaction in rendering. Sonia enjoys public art such as murals and sidewalk chalk for their ability to make art accessible to everyone.
In 2023 Sonia accepted the Fine Arts Teaching position at Chesterton Academy, a new classical high school in Knoxville. She also teaches recreational art classes at Painting with a Twist in Farragut.
Sonia’s art can be seen in sidewalk chalk/madonnari festivals, such as the Dogwood Arts Chalk Walk, through exhibitions with both the Arts and Culture Alliance and Dogwood Arts, and she currently has a mural featured by Dogwood Arts in Strong Alley in downtown Knoxville.