Marita Gootee grew up in a small southern Indiana town where an elementary school teacher told the class that all will constantly be in search of who they are. She did not think much of such a statement, but it lodged in her mind permanently. Gootee’s artwork is a constant search for self from her early crayon-colored rocks to today’s photographic work. Her art is her way of attempting to understand herself and the world around her.

Marita Gootee received a BA from College of Mount Saint Joseph and MFA from Indiana State University. She has been a professor at Mississippi State University since 1986. She has explored many different techniques over her tenure. Her work does not have a single style, yet it does have a basic concept that bridges the different bodies of the visual research and unites them into one voice. She has attending Anderson Ranch Workshops and Maine Photographic Workshops. Her work has been exhibited in Mississippi Museum of Art, Jackson MS; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC; Czech China Contemporary Museum (CCCM), Songzhuang, China; and in May2023 in 19th Julia Margaret Cameron Award for Women Photographers., Worldwide Photography Gala Awards and Fotonostrum, Barcelona, Spain.