I have been drawing for as long as I can remember. I drew on anything I was allowed to and sometimes on things I was not. My family always encouraged me, but I still had to wait until I was in the fifth grade to be admitted to a local art class. It was one of the longest waits of my life. Once there, I felt like I was in heaven. I have not stopped making art and knowing how blessed I am to have a gift like this.
My recent watercolors are of my favorite subjects, flowers and the children of Haiti. I paint with vibrant colors using many transparent layers to show the mysterious depth of the center of a flower; my favorite part of the flower, and the twinkle in the eyes of a Haitian child who has seen so much suffering yet still has joy in his heart. These things inspire me and I need to paint them. Simply put; I paint beauty and joy.
Marni Maree is honored to be one of the first group of recipients of the Arts Council of Fairfax County’s Strauss Fellowships for Visual Arts.
Marni’s vibrant watercolors represent her love for drawing, desire to create beauty and her inner joy. Her favorite subjects to paint are flowers and scenes from her travels to the West, Greece, Spain and Haiti. In Haiti, she is able to find much joy in the children living in extreme poverty and chaos. She wants to capture that spirit and share their stories on paper. She wants to celebrate the beauty of a flower and make it impossible for you to ignore it.
Marni earned her BFA in Fashion Illustration from Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia, PA. She worked as a freelance graphic artist after graduating but gradually transitioned to colored pencil and then to watercolors. Her commercial art training has been very valuable to her fine art career. She has recently taught herself many useful computer programs such as PhotoShop, Quicken, Web Design and more.
Marni’s education continues with workshops in watercolor, colored pencil and oil painting. She has been commissioned to paint watercolors for many private collectors, a church and a winery.
One of her most recognized artistic accomplishments was being selected to paint one of the panda sculptures for the Pandamania 2004 Public Arts Project in Washington , DC. Her panda, “Basking in the Sunflowers”; a panda covered head to toe with sunflowers, was selected to be a part of the live auction and now resides in a peaceful suburb in Maryland. She also was selected to paint a book for the “Arts in the Pages” Public Arts Program 2008 for the Fairfax County Library Foundation. Her book sculpture, “Florishing Fables”, also covered in sunflowers, can be found at theTyson’s Pimmit Library at 7584 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22043.
Marni exhibited her work regularly in the Loft Gallery, participates in local group shows and has had a solo show about once a year for the past 14 years. She has won numerous awards for her watercolors.
Marni was a member of the Loft Gallery for 10 years where she did Publicity for seven years. She is also a member of many art groups such as Springfield Art Guild where she served as president for 3 years, Membership for 2 years, Classes for 3 years, Show Chair for numerous group shows and as a judge for a Springfield Art Guild Scholarship award and Springfield Women’s Club Art Exhibit. She is also a member of the Lorton Arts Foundation, ValeArts, Potomac Valley Watercolorists, Vienna Arts Society, Arts Council of Fairfax County and Fairfax Art League and serves as she can on various committees.
Marni taught Art classes for the 2007 – 2012 July Enrichment Programs at Village of Hope School, Gantier, Haiti. She assisted two fourth grades and a third grade class at Bailey’s Elementary School’s Mural Project in 2007 – 2012. Marni also teaches Watercolor and Drawing at the Workhouse Arts Center, Goodwin House Retirement Community and The Fairfax as well as private students in her studio.
Marni has 3 children, lives and works in Springfield, VA with her husband, Ron and has adjusted to her empty nest.