The Mennello Museum of American Art



900 East Princeton Street
Orlando, FL 32803
Phone 407.246.4278

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Mary Whyte: A Portrait of Us

October 16 – January 3, 2016

Mary Whyte, "Graffiti"

Mary Whyte, "Graffiti," 2008, watercolor on paper, on loan from Coleman Fine Art

In Mary Whyte’s new exhibition at The Mennello Museum of American Art, the spirit of our country is presented in the artist’s provocative watercolors of everyday people. Using broad washes of vibrant watercolor coupled with focused areas of intricate detail, Whyte brings to life the expression, perseverance, and character of a nation’s citizenry. From Whyte’s paintings of her African-American neighbors in South Carolina to her depictions of weathered farmers and laborers of the Midwest, the artist tells the story of an American people that is contemporary, candid, and often moving.

Mary Whyte: A Portrait of Us is the final exhibition in the museum’s yearlong “Storytellers of the South: Voices of Women” series of exhibitions.

When Whyte’s paintings are exhibited together, the viewer is offered a rare glimpse into the artist’s private world. Here are the folks Whyte has met along the way and has gotten to know. The result is the feeling that we have ventured into a family reunion, and are surrounded by faces that feel familiar to us. We are drawn in, and become witness to not only to our universal commonality, but also to the life and work of an accomplished artist.

Whyte’s paintings have earned international recognition and are held in numerous private, corporate, and museum collections. She is the author of several books, including Working South, Down Bohicket Road and Painting Portraits and Figures in Watercolor.  In 2013 the biography of her life and work by Martha Severens, More Than a Likeness: The Enduring Art of Mary Whyte was published by University of South Carolina Press.

Media Release: Mary Whyte

"Mary Whyte: A Portrait of Us," American Art Collector, October 2015

"Mary Whyte: A Portrait of Us," On View Magazine, October/December 2015

"Art By, About Women," Orlando Sentinel, October 15, 2015

"Culture for Your Calendar by Josh Garrick," Winter Park/Maitland Observer, October 15, 2015


Standing in the Spirit:

Selections of Folk Art by

Southern Women

Continuing through January 3, 2016

Bernice Sims, "Wash Day"

Bernice Sims, "Wash Day," circa 1994, acrylic on canvas, from CJ Williams Collection.

Due to popularity, selections from our summer exhibition have been held over through January and include pieces by master folk artists such as Nellie Mae Rowe and Clementine Hunter from the CJ Williams Collection and the City of Orlando Permanent Collection.


The Mennello Museum of American Art is generously supported by the City of Orlando and Friends of The Mennello Museum of American Art.  Additional funding is provided by Orange County Government through the Arts & Cultural Affairs Program and United Arts of Central Florida.

Orange County Leaper

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