Last year we were able to help design part of a ski cabin located in Brighton, Utah. The homeowner introduced us to artist Mary Sinner, who provided the most beautiful ski-themed artwork for the home. We love familiarizing ourselves with local artists and decided we'd like to highlight some talented artists here on the blog. This is the first of hopefully many blogposts spotlighting artists nearby.
Mary has an MFA in Painting and BFA in Painting and Drawing from The University of Utah. She embraces her sense of curiosity and is interested in iconic symbols that migrate through the cultural strata.
Her work has been selected for numerous prestigious group exhibitions including: The Springville Salon, The University of Utah President’s Gallery Exhibition and 35x35. Mary’s entry was given a juror’s choice award for the 2017 West Elm x Minted Challenge and her work was selected to be part of Anthropologie’s 2018 and 2019 Art/Home Décor collection. Mary is represented by Meyer Gallery in Park City, UT and Oh Be Joyful Gallery Crested Butte, CO. Her work can also be found at The Paris Market & Brocante in Savannah, GA. View more Mary’s work at marysinnerfineart.com.
What is your Earliest Memory of Creating Art?
My Mom is also an artist. She is an illustrator and has written many books on different methods of artmaking/crafting. I don’t have any specific memories about making art early on but do remember spending time with my Mom while she worked on various projects. I would follow her around and watch her work. Using her supplies, I came up with my own projects. I don’t think those ‘projects’ ever amounted to anything genius but my experimentation was vital to building confidence and feeding further curiosity.
What inspires you?
Most of my work is based upon found vintage images. I love sifting through old film slides, magazines, and polaroids. I have found some incredible reference images in stacks of photos that were slated to be thrown away. I’m continually inspired by the contrast between old and new. I love experimenting with texture and colors that might not seem friendly.
How would you describe your work?
My work is somewhere between reality and fiction. Not hyper real but enough details to describe the objects or scene. I find that when I try to make my paintings look more “real” they end up losing some of their magic. I think my best pieces are the ones that exist between.
What are some tips that you have from curating pieces for your own home?
Buy what you love. If you like a piece enough, you will find space for it. Some of my very favorite pieces are pieces by my children. I make sure to have them framed and display them properly instead of just keeping them in storage. Family photographs are also a great untapped resource. The photo in my kitchen is from an old Polaroid of my Grandpa Lee. I had it restored, enlarged, and professionally framed. Now it feels like a cool Slim Aarons style print and it has special meaning. I don’t necessarily believe in ‘matching’ as long as the artwork ‘feels right’ in its surrounding. Play with moving pieces into different rooms and settings. Sometimes you will find that different pieces feel much better in a space that you hadn’t considered. If you love a piece enough, it’s easy to find the perfect spot for it in your home.