Mary Hardy

“In the Garden”



My work consists of an inventory of images that I constantly recycle. It has been noted that, “the recurrence or repetition of certain images suggests a healing practice, a mantra; incantatory and magical, a way of inciting new meaning.”

They are images that resonate with me for some obscure reason. I do not know why and I have learned not to question, just to trust the visceral need to use them. The connection though, seems to originate from bits of vague or fleeting memories. I am intrigued by the ambiguity of memory. The images therefore act as symbols, the language that I use to initiate a conversation between my inner “memory scape” and the canvas.

My manipulation of atmosphere, color and marks are an attempt to reflect how memories seem to emerge from deep within and then rapidly fade. Areas are therefore layered, partially buried and lost while other areas are more distinct and sharp. I use mixed media (painting, drawing and collage materials) because it seems to lend itself to responding rapidly, TRYING to capturing those fleeting aspects, the elusive layers or veils of memory. I build up multiple layers of surfaces, some transparent to create an atmospheric depth while other areas have a textured, heavy and raw surface, all reflective of how memories can float up, rapidly recede and/or surface again, harsh, sharp and unexpected.

The collaged elements and photos, having a previous history or story, incite other memories adding another layer of ambiguity and therefore leaving the work open to varying interpretations. It is my hope that the ambiguity allows the viewer to participate, to inject or originate a story or meaning of their own. – Mary Hardy

Selected Solo Exhibitions

2012 – “An Inventory of Images; My Alphabet”, MS Gulf Coast Community College, Gulfport, MS
2008 – “An Empty Presence”, Wiregrass Museum of Art, Dothan, AL
2006 – “Pulling Threads: Seeking Structure” ,University of Mississippi, Oxford, MS
2002 – “Mary Hardy/ New Work” Meridian Community College, Meridian, MS
2002 – “Passage”, Tupelo Art Gallery/ Tupelo, MS
2003 – “Metaphors and Memories” Sekul Wolf Face Gallery Ocean Springs, MS
1999 – “Sacred Signs”, Ohr-Okeefe Museum of Art, Biloxi, MS
1996 – “Icons; an Installation”, Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, Gautier, MS
1993 – “Mary Hardy New Work”, Art Who?, Gallery, Ocean Springs, MS
1993 – Lucille Parker Gallery, William Carey College, Hattiesburg, MS

Selected Group Exhibitions and Awards

2013 – “Art, The Visible Thread That Connects”, Gail Keenan Art Gallery, Long Beach, MS
2012 – Lois Lambert Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2012 – National Juried Competition, South Arkansas Art Center, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, El Dorado, AR
2011 – “Within Sight of Land, 10 Gulf Coast Artists”, South Arkansas Arts Center, El Dorado, AR
2011 – “Inspirations A Juried Exhibition”, Walter Anderson Museum of Art, Ocean Springs, MS
2011 – “Most Innovative” award, Mississippi Art Colony
2010 – “B10 / The Wiregrass Biennial”, Wiregrass Museum of Art, Dothan, AL
2010 – Award of Merit, Alabama Art Colony
2010 – “Halcyone Barnes Memorial Award”, Mississippi Art Colony
2009 – “Best Use of Color” Award, Mississippi Art Colony Spring show
2008, 2007 – “Most Innovative” award, Mississippi Art Colony
2005 – “Mississippi Artists of the Year” (2 recipients), Mississippi Committee / National Museum of Women in the Arts
2005 – “Halcyone Barnes Memorial Award”, Mississippi Art Colony
2004 – Juried Group Show, Mississippi Art Colony
2004 – Juried Group Show, Meridian Museum of Art, Meridian, MS
2003 – Outstanding Faculty Award, Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College
2001 – Scholar’s Grant Award, Mississippi Humanities Council

Private Collections

Deposit Guaranty National Bank
Munro Petroleum
KPMG (formerly Peat Marrick)
Trustmark National Bank
Mississippi Court Reporters

Selected Activities and Affiliations

2013 recipient of a Mississippi Arts Commission Artist Fellowship
2010-2013 – Curator for the Mary C. O’Keefe Cultural Center / Albert Duckett Gallery, Ocean Springs, MS
2010 – fellowship, Anderson Ranch, Colorado
2010 – “Artist Mini-grant” from the MS Arts Commission
2010 – taught mixed media workshop “developing Your Personal Symbolism”, St. Albans Episcopal Church, Bovina, MS
2009 – judge for the Gumtree Art Festival, Tupelo, MS
2008 – Juror for Biloxi Art Association’s annual show and competition Biloxi, MS
2007 – contributor to the book Katrina; Mississippi Women Remember
2006 – taught mixed media Art Colony workshop at Tougaloo College , Jackson, MS
2004-07 – President, Mississippi Art Colony
2002-04 – Board of Directors, Mississippi Art Colony
2002 – Guest lecturer, Walter Anderson Museum of Art, Ocean Springs, Mississippi
2000-07 – Gallery Director, MS Gulf Coast Community College, Jackson County Campus
1999-2007 – Instructor of Drawing and Painting, Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College


Post-graduate and graduate work, University of Tennessee
MA – Art Education – University of South Alabama, Mobile, Alabama
BS – Art Education, University of South Alabama