Home · Blog · Art : Spotlight on a supporter: Beth O’Donnell

Beth Odonnell ImageI’m so pleased to be involved with Voss Foundation. I’ve actually been in the Milgis valley up in northern Kenya and have witnessed the work that Voss Foundation has done up there with the help of my friend Helen Douglas Dufresne. Without water there is no life. I’ve worked for the past 15 years with a group of women in the slums of Nairobi. I am partnering with them to help empower them to take charge and to help themselves living in the most dire circumstances. In doing so, they have empowered me. Together and with women from 7 countries, I published my first book, Angels in Africa. A photography book depicting 7 women from 7 countries making a difference at the grassroots level.

‘Women helping women’ all over the world is going to change our world. I am hopeful with this message and I’m happy to be a part of the movement.

~ Beth O’Donnell

Beth O’Donnell is a celebrated international photographer and philanthropist. She studied photography at the Evanston Art Center in Evanston, Illinois and The International Center for Photography in New York City. Her photojournalistic work in Africa, for which she spent two months in 2000 working in the slums of Nairobi, Kenya, was published in The London Daily Telegraph and Marie Claire magazines. She has also been published in The Financial Times and has appeared twice as a guest on Oprah Winfrey’s Oxygen Network, for “Angels in the Slums” and “AIDS and Orphans.” Beth exhibited work at the United Nations in conjunction with the Istanbul +5 Conference and her photographs have been auctioned at several major philanthropic events around the United States. She is currently represented by Distant Origin in New York, Holly Hunt (both in Miami and New York), NiBa Home in Miami, Henry Beguelin (in Aspen, Chicago, Los Angeles, Malibu and San Francisco), and Renee Fotouhi Fine Art in New York. She is currently exhibiting at Distant Origin in New York, Niba Home in Miami Beach and Jarlathdan in Amagansett, New York.

Beth’s book, Angels in Africa, was published by the Vendome Press in 2006. Seven years in the making, this important book introduces us to seven visionary women hailing from different countries, who each have taken powerful action to rectify the devastating societal conditions in Africa. It is heartbreaking, yet colorful and uplifting. Angels in Africa was named by the Guardian (UK) as one of the top ten photography books of 2006.

Her most recent works are mixed media explorations at the intersection between photography and painting. Using encaustic wax and pigmented oil stick to add texture and color to photographs mounted on birch panels, Beth captures a diverse variety landscapes including SoHo’s iconic water towers and images of Africa.

Beth has also founded dans la Cuisine Cooking School, Cooking for Conservation; Miraval – Life in Balance Resort and Spa – Tucson, Arizona; and Sierra Tucson Addictions Facility.

From 1985- 1992, she was the owner of the Beth O’Donnell Gallery with locations in Tucson, Arizona and Aspen, Colorado.

From 1975-1980, she achieved her greatest accomplishment: three sons – Billy, Ryan, and Christian.

In addition to being a Voss Foundation supporter, Beth’s past and present Board Affiliations include:

  • Misericordia Home
  • Boys Hope Girls Hope
  • Tucson Museum of Art
  • African Rainforest Conservancy

Voss Foundation Executive Director Kara Gerson says, “Voss Foundation is thrilled to have as our champion such an impressive artist and philanthropist with so deep a connection to Africa. It is a real testament to our work to have Beth’s support and we thank her for her confidence in us.”

Beth serves on Voss Foundation’s Women Helping Women New York Luncheon committee.

Voss Foundation © 2014