December 2nd, 2022
We have a new series of works by Mary Scrimgeour at Gallery MAR. We love the bright colors and whimsy of this series, and asked Mary Scrimegour to tell us a little more about her inspiration behind the series. Read on to enjoy… in her words!
My winter monk series references the Monks of St. Bernard’s pass in Switzerland, where an abbey was constructed in the 16th Century. The Benedictine monks took it upon themselves to guide travelers over the pass and to often rescue them (along with their dogs) from peril. They became very proficient at snow shoeing and skiing. A lake lay at the foot of the mountains and the abbey which stands in a small, V-shaped valley protected and safe from weather.
In my paintings I have injected a sense of humor and whimsy. Some of the monks were not quite as good as the others — but their hearts were always in it.
The life of a monk has fascinated me ever since I was a child. I imagined that I saw one standing in a forest smiling at me when I was very young. Fascinated with that experience and with their independent, self-sufficient and minimal lifestyle I began painting them in various expressions many years ago.
The idea of a monk has perhaps influenced my ongoing quest for a simple, minimal and somewhat nomadic, artistic life. They represent to me a calm, reassuring, trustworthy figure filled with joie de vivre and innocence. I feel calm when I paint them and calm when I look at them!