Dena McKee - Biographical    

Dena McKee, Southern Artist & Historic Preservationist

     Dena McKee has carved a niche for herself by painting to preserve historic landmarks and capture memories.  Her watercolors and prints feature a drive-in, schools, a theater, a carnival parade or a park at the beach -- appealing subjects to those who share fond memories and those with affinity for life in a small town.  Dena divides her time between her home in Pascagoula, MS where her showroom is located and her home on Dauphin Island, Alabama where her studio is located.

     Following high school in Morgan City, Louisiana, Dena attended University of Southern Mississippi where she received her degree in education.  While in college, she studied art and continued after college with private classes and workshops throughout Mississippi.

     Dena's motivation for painting nostalgic icons of the coast are the memories of her husband, Don who grew up in Pascagoula.  She enjoys evoking memories in the viewer that go beyond the paint and paper.  Her subjects that capture the heart and soul of the community for viewers make her a popular artist in South Mississippi, Louisiana and Alabama. Whether painting at home or in Maine where Dena and her husband frequently vacation, her basis is the same, "I want to make people remember a time when there were no worries or stresses, and just for that moment -- take them back to that place."    

     Dena is a member of the Singing River, Ocean Springs and Gulf Coast Art Associations, and the Mississippi Chapter of the National Museum of Women in the Arts as well as past board member of the Jackson County Arts Council and the Mississippi Coast Audubon Society.  She has exhibited work in the G. E. Ohr Arts & Cultural Center in Biloxi and Jolly McCarty Art Depot in Pascagoula as well as various shows along the coast.  Her prints are carried in shops and galleries throughout the coast as well as in Maine.  Her originals are in private collections throughout the United States and Canada.