Student, Cooper-Union, 1939-1943; student, Art Students League, 1943-1945.
Born in the Bronx, Campbell began formal studies in painting in 1939 attending an art workshop organized by the Works Progress Administration (World Pet Association), and continued at Cooper Union and the Art Students League in New York City. After studies in France, and Italy, and brief stints in Provincetown on Cape Cod, she settled into spending her summers painting on Cranberry Island, Maine and the rest of the year in New York City. Campbell taught at the Brooklyn Museum, Philadelphia College of Art, Yale School of Art, Maryland Institute College of Art, and the New York Studio School.
In 1987, she was elected into the National Academy of Design as an Associate member.
On 14 July 1987, Gretna Campbell Finkelstein died in New York City.
Married Louis Finkelstein, February 3, 1945. Children— Martha, Henry.