News

Guest Artist Show: Open Window

Guest Artist Show: Open Window

Introducing “Open Window,”  Mary Hong Gallery’s first guest artist show of the 2016 Summer Artist Series: “An Art Tour of 30A.”

Guest Artist JUNE

The month of June, highlights the work of award winning artist, John Maher.

A lifelong native of the Emerald Coast, John received his Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from Florida State University after beginning his art career at the age of 13!  John has the unique distinction of being accomplished in a wide variety of different mediums.

His bright and colorful full-scale wall murals can be seen in many homes and businesses across the Southeast. His oil paintings capture the beauty of nature, from vibrant sea life to serene landscapes to colorful New Orleans scenes and vivid still-lifes.    When he’s not painting, he’s carving!  John is also an accomplished  bronze and marble sculptor.

His work has exquisite detail and craftsmanship.  John’s work can be seen in dozens of homes, businesses, hospitals and private collections around the U.S. His clients include Sacred Heart Hospitals of the Emerald Coast, Fresenius Care Group and The Gove – Siebold Group.  John lives, paints, and enjoys life with his wife and son in Destin Florida.

Mary Hong Gallery invites you to join us for the reception of “Open Window” on Friday, Jun 3, 2016, from 5pm-7pm.  Stop in and see John’s collection of beautiful seascapes of Florida’s coast and take the opportunity to learn more about this talented local artist!

I took some time to find out more about John!  He’s one of those hidden-gem-artists.  If I had his talents, I’d tell the world!  But not John!  He’s pretty humble about his artistic gifts.  And he has many.  Here’s more about John in his words:

1. When did you first “Wow” yourself with your art?

Although I had been painting for as long as I could remember, when I was in 8 th grade, I did my first large mural in the gym at my middle school. I remember feeling so proud and impressed with myself that I painted something so large. And I got paid!

2. Are you drawn to certain types of imagery?

I enjoy painting a wide range of subject matter. I tend to gravitate more towards nature, landscapes and animals, both above and below the sea. I truly love figurative painting and sculpture that is done in a loose, yet realistic style.

3. For composition, do you sketch by hand? How do you begin your art?

When I have an idea for a painting or sculpture, I make an initial sketch, to get the idea out of my head onto paper. Then I use lots of photo references or live models to complete the piece.

4. Do you allow your work to wander or are you disciplined and stick to the plan?

I tend to stick with the original idea of a painting as far as the subject matter. If it’s a figure, it’s going to stay a figure.. a landscape will stay a landscape. However, I remain open to how loose or precise I paint. Often, the image in my head does not match the image that emerges on the canvas. I let the painting take the lead and I always like it better.

5. Do you feel the same joy producing a commissioned work as you do creating something on your own?

I do feel the same joy with commissioned work. When I work with a client, they have an idea but can only express it to a certain point. I can then take their idea and bring it to life, turn it into something tangible. I think that is what brings them the most joy.

6. Do you stick with one piece of art or do you move among many works in progress?

I am a painter and a sculptor, and tend to work on a piece in each medium at the same time.

7. How do you get yourself in a creative mood?

Cold beer and bad music (at least my wife thinks so).

8. What would our readers be surprised to know about you?

I can paint or sculpt anything…except an abstract!

9. Any new endeavors?

I have recently been commissioned to do a number of original oil paintings for the Henderson Beach Resort. I am also honored to be painting the murals in the new Sacred Heart Rehab and Pediatrics Center.

Thank you, John!!