Featured Artist Marilyn MacGregor

Enjoy the playful, color-filled portfolio of featured artist Marilyn MacGregor. Visit her website for more from this talented artist.

 

grid

 

I am always on a journey, even if I stick close to home and studio. I’m forever curious, ever interested in ideas and possibilities. I’m especially fascinated by the ways in which art – my own and others – relates and connects to other times, places, and people. I aim to be as true to my own heart as possible in my work, which takes different forms and can sometimes seem to be coming from very different places.

 

grid painting

 

At the core of it all is drawing, still the best, most essential way for an artist to see and know the world. I embrace Photoshop and new ways of doing things, but my hand is what connects me directly with my mind and heart.

 

Brantôme: Dordogne France

 

Per usual, right now I’m working in a number of different arenas. I’m developing an ongoing series of abstract works on paper that take the form of grids, loosely interpreted. For these drawings in particular I give a good deal over to the pen so that the result is a conversation rather than a controlled outcome. Working with water-soluble ink plays a part as well; as I add color or simply wash the drawing with a wet brush, the conversation deepens and changes.

 

 

grid painting

 

I love the interaction; I can’t be completely certain how things will turn out. I’ve done a lot of printmaking and find in these a similar thrill in the process. I sometimes add further layers of acrylic paint, at times to mask the drawing, at others to let it come through in a new light. I’ve always been a narrative artist and in these works, even though they’re non-figurative, I find myself still telling stories.

 

handmade book

 

These grids are journeys; I often use the word in titles. Having taught Art History for years comes in handy – grids are a primal form used by many cultures to communicate specific ideas. In my Grids I see narratives of life – careful plan and order interrupted and sideswiped by accidents and unscripted events. Sometimes those surprises are tragic but sometime the unexpected, even messy, jolts lead to meaningful, beautiful moments.

 

Flower Market in Paris

 

I’ve done a great deal of actual traveling and have piles of sketchbooks from many places. Not only are they collections of drawings, they contain visceral memories of people, events, smells, meals, etc. I use them, sometimes literally by scanning them and making prints, but they also teach and inspire me. I continue to spend time in Paris and France – I lead arts-focused tours to Paris – so naturally some of my work reflects my love of all things French. My solo show in October at Bluestone Gallery in Philadelphia will include a series of works on paper called Mascarons, based on the stone faces that adorn many Paris buildings.

 

Place des Victoires

 

My background in writing and illustrating children’s books also informs and enriches my work. I teach courses in the history and meaning of Children’s Literature at a local university and do illustration work for art licensing and for my own line of greeting cards and prints. My illustration work allows me to indulge my bent for whimsy and humor, including a group of very silly cats. With a lifelong interest in books I also occasionally make artist’s books, with prints of my drawings as the inside pages and text incorporated into the cover designs.

 

Christmas Cat

Comments

  1. How I love seeing the words “more from this talented artist” when it comes to Marilyn MacGregor.

  2. I LOVE Marilyn’s art! She has done some remarkable illustrations and drawings that are very unique and sophisticated! And knowing her personally, it makes it even more meaningful to read about her journey and new stories!

  3. Coming from you, Dianne, that is high praise! Thank you!

  4. Thanks, Alex!

  5. There is a lovely loose quality to Marilyn’s work.

  6. Thank you, Patti!

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