Ocracoke's Beacon Featured in Art Opening

Press Release
Ocracoke's Beacon Featured in Art Opening

Island artist Mary Bassell, who paints vibrant island scenes with pastels, will show her new works of Ocracoke’s famous lighthouse on Wednesday, Sept. 23rd.

Mary's show is part of Down Creek Gallery's "Expose Yourself to Art" series. All art opening are open to the public, 5 – 8pm, and feature refreshments and live music. The musical guest for Mary’s show will be Rob King.

While many of Mary's works depict the colorful hues of the beach, the marshes or the sandy lanes that only an artist can see, this year she has been focusing on the Ocracoke Lighthouse and capturing it from different vantage points on the island.

It wasn’t until Mary was well into adulthood that she discovered her passion for this art medium in which the artist must layer her colors to achieve the desired effect.

Hailing from Long Island, NY, Mary, in her early 20s, worked in colored and stained glass and took classes from na­tionally known artists.

When she turned 50, it was time for her to follow her dream to draw and paint.

She spent an entire winter driving her old blue truck to the island creeks where the marsh grasses dominate the blue wa­ters of the Sound. There she sketched, day after day, capturing the nuances of shadow and light, the movement of the creeks and marshes on paper.

In February of that year, she visited Sonoma, Calif., and by chance walked into some pastel classes.

That was a turning point. Mary had found her passion and began working with other es­tablished artists, developing her abilities and learning technique.

From realistic scenes, she evolved to softer, more flowing strokes resulting in the vi­brant, impressionistic colors that mark her work.

Mary’s mantra has been to always push to do better. Her advice to aspiring artists is “quit thinking about it. You just have to do it.”



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