Maro at the Mill
Mary Bartley, “Maro” is an abstract expressionist painter living in Donnybrook, Dublin and divides her time between the city and the rural landscapes of Co.Leitrim. The natural surroundings of both locations provide the inspiration for most of her work. Painting, for Mary started quite recently in an attempt to distract herself from the constant chronic pain resulting from MS, several unsuccessful spinal surgeries and most recently, breast cancer. A little over three years ago Mary started something she assumed would be a hobby but has transformed into an all consuming passion. Painting has provided her with a refuge from the stress of coping with long term illness.
Mary works almost exclusively in acrylic on canvas and although she finds painting very physically demanding she has learned to adapt her techniques and style to suit her ability on any given day. During the months of cancer treatment she continued to paint despite the awful effects of chemotherapy, surgery and finally radium treatment and whilst the colours may have darkened she demonstrated a stubborn determination to continue painting. Mary has been prolific in her output, perhaps mindful of the fleeting nature of time and is of the firm belief that art has preserved her sanity on many an occasion!
In spite of all that has been set against her, Mary’s work exudes vibrant colour and energy, she is both extremely nervous and very excited at the prospect of displaying her work to the public for the very first time! To sum up in her words “Painting has given me the opportunity to reimagine my future and the chance to become known for something other than constant illness”