African American Folk Art by Mari Hall


Oil Paintings ~ African American Folk Art
Mari Hall, Artist

"Eyelash Concerto in Violin Purple" 26 in W X 16 in H - $100 USD
Fine Art Prints on Canvas
African American Folk Art
Art in the Key of Life

2020 will be known for many things, but perhaps, the COVID 19 pandemic will be the most notable event. The fear, the uncertainty, the sorrow, touched everyone's heart. Several of my paintings that were done during this time, have the pandemic as the theme of the painting.

"Eyelash Concerto in Violin Purple" was painted during the late summer of the COVID 19 pandemic. By the time I was beginning this painting, the fires in California had consumed hundreds of thousands of acres. The fires raged up and down the state. It was unbelievable, yet another fear and worry, along with the COVID 19 pandemic problems. The fire came to the southern part of the valley where I live. I kept my eyes on the fire maps, just in case I might need to prepare to evacuate. I watched the news, tracking where the winds were blowing, in which direction. The fire did not come into the valley but stayed in the foothills and mountain areas. The air smelled like camp fires and burn. The air was leaden grey with smoke and ash. There were a few days where there was literally no blue sky, just brown grey sticky ugly muck. My eyes were stinging constantly. I put on my favorite Mozart CD, and just painted. I could not take my eyes away from the grey brown ugly mess, so that ended up in my painting, with a deep red orange tangled sun off in the distance. Mozart kept me happy and structured in my head about the disasters engulfing the State of California. I am still waiting for our first rain to arrive. It has been several months since our last rain. I will celebrate the first rain with a hot cup of tea and more Mozart!

I use an alternate spelling, preferring Syren to Siren, to modernize the word for my own purposes. The idea of Syrens in my paintings, was drawn from Greek mythology which was one of my favorite book topics to read as a young person. The ideas in Greek mythology are timeless and very visual.

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