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Thursday, September 15, 2016
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Monday, July 25, 2011

Artist: Mary Lawrence Allen

An excerpt from an article by Bill Ellis of the Commercial Appeal follows. It can be read in its entirety here.

Allen, 76, has taken art classes here and there since she started painting nearly 30 years ago, but she is always looking for new ways to express what she calls "the excitement going on in nature at all times -- nothing is passive or static, it's all active." To that end, she has used gold, silver and copper leaf, aluminum, Plexiglas and Mylar against more common art media such as acrylics and colored pencils. Her appropriation of nontraditional materials has even extended to nature itself.

"I decided to use the lichen on a piece of bark that was lying in my front yard," she says. "It became so beautiful to me that I coated these nature items with a gloss medium to make them preserved and incorporated them in shadow-boxed framing so that it's three-dimensional."

Acting as alchemist, Allen seems to render all back to Mother Earth, suggesting through the frequent insertion of precious metals in her art that nature and life are what is most precious.

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