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Barbara Smith Dearborn: A Retrospective

On view at the Silver Center for the Arts: June 1 – August 8, 2024

Closing Reception: August 8, 2pm-4PM

Barbara Smith Dearborn was born in 1935 in Long Island, New York and moved to Plymouth during her teenage years. She graduated from Plymouth High School in 1953. She met her husband Denny Dearborn at Plymouth State (then Plymouth Teachers College). Barbara majored in mathematics, and after receiving her B.Ed. degree from Plymouth State she was hired by Plymouth Teachers College. In 1962, she earned her Master’s degree from the University of New Hampshire. 

In 1989, Barbara said, “I like to teach. I enjoy getting up in the morning and going to class. It is fun to teach, and I teach with enthusiasm. I really care about my students.” Her college students described her as “enthusiastic, helpful, entertaining, dedicated, encouraging, and one of the finest teachers.” 

In addition to being a mathematics professor, Barbara was a passionate visual artist, an avid golfer, and a supporter of various community organizations and activities. Barbara was instrumental in creating the Karl Drerup Art Gallery that opened in Hyde Hall in 1986. Barbara studied art with zeal. She took her first oil painting lesson from a local artist Pat Giebotowski, and she also completed over 20 art courses at Plymouth State. 

In 1997, the new painting studio on the third floor of the Draper & Maynard Building was named for her and dedicated in her memory. Barbara particularly enjoyed artistic design and oil painting on very large canvases.

The art displayed is from the collection of Mitzi Dearborn. These paintings, drawings, and prints are available for purchase through an online auction. The proceeds of this auction will be split between the Museum of the White Mountains and the Barbara S. Dearborn Art Scholarship. Place your bids HERE. 

Photography by John Hession. Copyright Mitzi Dearborn.