Gallery News


Mary Josephson Paintings Exhibited in Governor’s Office

Mary Josephson Paintings Exhibited in Governor’s Office
Art work on View Through March 5, 2010
An exhibition of oil paintings and charcoal drawings by Portland, Oregon artist Mary Josephson is on display in the office of Governor Ted Kulongoski through March 5, 2010.  Josephson’s paintings make masterful use of a vivid color palette coupled with a strong design sense.  Her works address the human character or spirit, conveying an everyday life that has been infused with a sense of resilience while remaining fragile. They retain a sense of humor while conveying goodness; and recognize an individual’s ability to rise above adversity with a mythological-like strength.
Born in 1953 in Biloxi, Mississippi, Josephson grew up in a military family that moved frequently.  As a result, she saw constant change in both the landscape and friends.  Learning to “read people below the surface and make friends quickly,” Josephson’s artwork recalls her youth spent in the desert communities of the American southwest. Here, against a backdrop of Western movies and television shows, her childhood adventures discovered inspiring terrain and a land teeming with life.  Josephson recalls that this early exposure to the juxtaposition of realism and fantasy in a landscape form prompted her to the revelation that “people and things may not be how they seem.”  This concept has prevailed in her artwork and become a life-long metaphor for her.
Josephson received a BFA from Pacific Northwest College of Art, and certificates from Parsons School of Design and Ecole National Superior Des Beaux Artes in Paris.  She has been a teacher at Oregon College of Art and Craft and taught art to TAG and at-risk youth in Portland Public Schools.  Her work is in major regional collections including the Portland Art Museum, Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Eugene; the Tacoma Art Museum, Portland Community College, and OHSU, among others.
In 1994 she received an Oregon Arts Commission Artist Fellowship and in 2003, was awarded the Edwin Austin Abbey Fellowship for Mural Painting from the National Academy of Design in New York.
Mary Josephson’s work may be seen in the Office of the Governor, 2nd floor, Oregon State Capitol, 900 Court Street in Salem, Mondays through Fridays from 8 am – 5 pm.

The Art in the Governor’s Office Program honors selected Oregon artists with exhibitions in the reception area of the Governor’s Office in the State Capitol. An exhibit in the Governor’s
office is considered a lifetime honor. Artists whose work has been shown there include Gordon Gilkey, Sally Haley, Yuji Hiratsuka, Manuel Izquierdo, James Lavadour, Henk Pander, Michele Russo and Margot Thompson.

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