Portland artist Mary Josephson is known for her expressive imagery of people and place. For this exhibition, Beneath the Surface, Josephson delves into what links and separates human experiences in the natural and manmade world around us. Through paintings, glass tile mosaics and lush figurative embroidered work, she juxtaposes images of the built environment and the natural world. In these latest pieces, fruits, flowers, insects and animals surround women and men in a variety of urban and parklike settings. Some images are comforting and joyful, while others probe at the sometimes mysterious and unsettling intersection of people and nature. The contrasting visual and tactile qualities that emerge from the variety of materials Josephson uses, draw the viewer in. Each medium captures color and shape in distinct ways, prompting close study and exploration of each piece.
Mary Josephson studied in Paris, France, at the École National Superior des Beaux Arts before receiving a BFA from the Pacific Northwest College of Art. She has been exhibiting her work since 1983 including shows at the Portland Art Museum, the Oregon Health Sciences University, the University of Austin in Texas, and the Bellevue Art Museum, WA. Prominent collections include Safeco, Microsoft, Oregon State University, Legacy Emanuel Children's Hospital, Tacoma Art Museum, and the Portland Art Museum. Commissions include work for Southern Oregon University, the Tigard Public Library, OR, Catlin Gabel School in Portland, Portland Fire and Rescue in conjunction with RACC, OR, Oregon Food Bank, and Multnomah County’s Juvenile Justice Center in Portland, OR. She most recently completed a major commission for a community center in Stockton, CA.