Sanibel, Florida-based artist Myra Roberts specializes in meticulously researched vintage Florida-style art of the 1920s to 1950s, and also social-commentary art based on World War II and the Holocaust. Local galleries featuring her work include Two Islands Gallery on Captiva, Lily’s of Sanibel, Trader’s Café Store on Sanibel, and Suncatcher’s Dream on Sanibel.
Her paintings are in public and private collections across the U.S. and Europe, including the estate of Robert Rauschenberg. Roberts received letters of endorsement for her “Faces of Anne Frank” project from Hillary Rodham Clinton, and the Jane Goodall Institute.
WGCU Public Media, in partnership with the Southwest Florida Community Foundation and the Women’s Fund of Southwest Florida, chose Roberts as one of five “2016 Makers: Women Who Make Southwest Florida.” Nominated by the public, the selection of Roberts was based on her impact in the arts and social justice in Southwest Florida.
Roberts earned a B.A. degree in art education, with an emphasis in painting and drawing, from Arizona State University. Her master’s degree is in printmaking and illustration, from Northern Illinois University. She taught painting, drawing, and art history for 25 years in Illinois public schools. Roberts and her family moved from Illinois to Sanibel in 1999.
She has exhibited and lectured throughout the U.S., including three times at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center of Fort Myers, Florida; in Chicago; Boothbay Harbor and Bar Harbor, Maine; at Cab Calloway School of the Arts in Wilmington, Delaware (grant-funded); Florida Holocaust Museum in St. Petersburg; the Holocaust Museum & Education Center of Southwest Florida; Florida Gulf Coast University; Florida SouthWestern State College, and the Museum of the Everglades.
Artwork by Roberts is extensively featured in media around the nation, such as WCVB-TV Boston’s Sanibel-Captiva Segment Four: Island Art feature; Colorado-based SouthwestArt magazine; Women Artists Datebook of Syracuse, New York; and Art of the Times magazine of New York City. Florida media include WFTX-TV Fox 4, Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce Cookbook; WGCU Gulf Coast Live! radio show and WGCU Public Media’s Expressions magazine; Grandeur magazine; Times of the Islands magazine, and several annual guides for The Islands of Sanibel & Captiva Chamber of Commerce.
Her work is the subject of three books, The Retro Art of Myra Roberts; Retro Images From the Florida Coast; and Project Tolerance: The Faces of Anne Frank, and the film Project Tolerance: The Faces of Anne Frank.