African American Folk Art by Mari Hall


Oil Paintings ~ African American Folk Art
Mari Hall, Artist

"Dawn" by Mari Hall
"Dawn" 12 in W X 16 in H - $225 USD
Fine Art Giclee Print on Watercolor Papers, Archival Quality
African American Folk Art
Art in the Key of Life

Heat. A press of bodies everywhere, the streets are overflowing with people, in every direction there are people, people, in costume, or not, with an exhale of desire for lift above all the ordinary, here comes the Mardi with the Gras of Carnivale, an evaporation of all that even approaches ordinary, in a long twining string of dancers, filling the streets, shoulder to shoulder, feet stomping, mouths singing, arms waving, costumes hiding, bodies shoving, shouting anything but English, my unlearned ears cannot absorb the heart of their words.

But it does not matter as I stuff another bit of spicy food into me, drinking something with a tastes of rum not wine. What time is it -- What is time. I fogot my watch or maybe my watch flew away on a swan, back to Los Angeles where a watch might be something meaningful, helpful, necessary, wanted, prized, given, being that schedules do not apply when Mardi is Gras.

What is time day month does not matter while I am watching a parade of folly and strong, dancing along as they have for so many years, reliving a history that I do not comprehend, feeling very blan, so very blan, too blan, walking with my American feet that never shed blood on this soil, for it is not my life, it is not my country, and while I am here I know that I cannot comprehend with my English American who they are and they cannot see who I am. I am no longer am I, a part of that but color, exceptionally, not by color as it does not apply when I know beyond all that it is my color not, but me, being from another place over there, where I cannot see them at all, and they will only see blan, and that becomes part of the Gras of Mardi. I am outside of it all but not wanting to declare how outside I am, I remain seated rather than dancing freely along the streets until the dawn arrives. Carnivale Port Au Prince Haiti. Truly experienced never forgotten.

Mari Hall describes her painting style as folk art, with a balance of ethnic references, flowing into her description of her art as African American Folk Art which probably defies formal catalogue. The influences for her contemporary oil paintings derive from a host of painters, who also embraced flat plane composition, fauvist color and abolished formal constraints of chiascuro modeling, horizon lines and light versus shadow. Her modern artist eye does not deny the influence of modern advertising, modern photography and modern humor. She describes herself as a self-taught artist leaning heavily upon the works of Henri Matisse, Paul Klee, Vincent Van Gogh and Paul Gauguin, with a host of other artists shuffled in between days and nights of perusing art in its many forms, including music. Her African American Folk Art is also influenced by Haitian paintings which fly in the face of gravity and reason into torrents of color and history. Mari Hall prefers the sticky torpid passion of oil paint with its dangers and fumes, to the more readily prized acrylic paint. The entire experience of painting with oil is sensory to the extreme, propelling her into the azure skies of creativity with a touch of Mojave Desert madness. To calm her flight into the vagaries of chaotic paint, Mari sometimes tosses out a novel, as writing for her, is another form of painting, only with words.

Mari Hall started painting in her late 20s as a way to fill her time with something constructive and engaging. Painting became a gateway into an emotional and mental space that stretched into decades of intense learning, expansion, failure, success, dreaming that forever she would have tubes of oil paint, boxes of pencils, bottles of ink, reams of paper, rolls of canvas with endless amounts of time and energy to push all of each strand into some visual form that held pleasure for another besides herself. She is in her fourth decade of painting and hopes to mimic forever her desires in paint until she can no longer hold a brush.

ElectricMoonBaby is African American Folk Art 2020, Outsider Art in the Key of Life.
ElectricMoonBaby is Mari Hall, Artist & Writer.
ElectricMoonBaby is American, Contemporary, Constant, Flavored.
ElectricMoonBaby is Art in a Fun Key. Enjoy., Mari Hall, Artist © 2016-2020