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Mary Sullivan creates 'in the spirit of nature” which she experiences as boundless creativity and variety. According to Sullivan “creating in its spirit is a fascinating journey,” partly inspired by Edvard Munch’s quote, “Nature is not only all that is visible to the eye . . . it also includes the inner pictures of the soul.” In Sullivan’s exploration of abstract painting, she kept finding that natural, organic forms emerged as she pursued abstract images. For the past few years she has concentrated on using water media with a limited palette of permanent lightfast inks, fluid acrylics and metallic water color. She applies pouring and staining techniques, often with resists, relying in large part on forces of gravity, capillary action, and evaporation for the final result. In addition she also reworks surfaces with some brush and pen application, as well as with rubbing, sanding and occasional glazing.
Sullivan works intuitively, responding to what is happening before her eyes and in her spirit, where feelings, forgotten memories and impressions are stored. The abstract nature of the images allows each viewer to form his/her own associations. “I love the openness of the process of abstract painting, the flow of the paint, what happens with color, the always surprising evocations.' Her paintings often have a Zen-like quality, appearing as though everything was born at once.
In 2010 Sullivan was awarded a grant by the Arts Council of Beaufort County with funds from the City of Beaufort and the SC Arts Commission through the NEA with additional funding from the John & Susan Bennett Memorial Arts Fund of the Coastal Community Foundation of SC. In 2011 she was awarded an Expansion Arts Fund grant from the Coastal Community Foundation of South Carolina. She had a solo exhibit, 'In the Spirit of Nature,' in March 2011 at the Walter Greer Gallery of the Art League of Hilton Head Island. In June- July 2012 she was the featured artist with the theme of, 'Time and Timelessness,' at the Society of Bluffton Artists in Bluffton, South Carolina. This is new work and exploring some different techniques along with the poured inks. Sullivan took courses at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, the American Academy of Art, the Lincoln Park Studio of Art and the Evanston Art Center. CHECK BLOG TAB ABOVE for SLIDESHOW.
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