Gail Severn Gallery

Marcia Myers



We all see the world through the prism of our own experience.  Bits and pieces of our past color the way we perceive the present. The mind has a way of gleaning that which it deems important, resulting in a sort of distilled essence of reality.   The fresco paintings of Marcia Myers speak of the essential, where visual cues give way to an underlying visceral experience expressed in pure painterly terms.


When Marcia Myers was first exposed to the ancient Roman murals of the 1st century CE, she was awed by their age and beauty.  Here, the walls of a buried city refused to forget a once thriving civilization.  Vivid colors spoke of timelessness while the disintegrating surface pointed to the temporal nature of existence.  It was these frescos, and those of the renaissance masters, that compelled Myers to transform this ancient technique into modern terms.  The experience was distilled into a synthesized abstraction of the essential in the artists’ mind and became the inspiration for a lifetime of painting.  Myers’ latest body of work is the culmination of a 28-year journey through time, integrating the technique of the masters with a vision of modernity, giving birth to the modern fresco.


Myers' paintings are relics of a creative process where the act of creating supersedes the product of creation.  Here, paint takes center stage, creating a symphony of color, light, texture, shape and space.  The viewer is propelled into a realm beyond recognizable subject matter, a place devoid of word and imagery where all is stripped to its very essence.  Here, the past and present comingle.


An ardent technician, Myers spent years mastering the art of fresco painting.  Classically trained in the style of Titian and Vermeer, she pursued papermaking at the Corcoran School of Art; she studied the unusual properties of oxidation and color technique as a visiting artist at the Johnson Bronze Foundry; she researched twentieth-century murals at the University of Guadalajara.  In her notebooks, Myers explained her fascination and aim of this demanding technique as “a marriage of medium and subject matter.” Through the elemental act of infusing pigment into a wet surface, pigment, surface and content fuse and become a single entity.  The resultant frescos create a space where the expected surrenders to the unexpected, where the bounded and boundless coexist.  The artist asserts control over the technical process, yet an element of surprise emerges in the unpredictable reaction between pigments as they dry.  The paper or canvas clearly defines a contained space, yet paint rebelliously drips and bleeds over the edges suggesting continuity beyond the confines of the borders.


Marcia Myers’ paintings tantalize, inviting the viewer into an ineffable dialogue with paint. The result is pure sensory indulgence.  Myers referred to color as “the most relative medium in art.”  Her luscious reds recall the ruins of Pompeii; earthy ochre’s: Tuscany; iridescent lapis blues: Giotto’s Arena Chapel murals.  While these colors summon a specific place and time, the viewer also responds in a personal way. Colors trigger memories and associations, shaping the lens through which the viewer perceives art.  It is through the power of color that the mind is transported through space and time to arrive at a present interpretation of past.


Selected Museums & Collections

Allied Capital, Washington, D.C.

Art in Embassies Program, Brussels, Belgium

Belgium American Investments & Trade, Dallas, TX

The Bank of Austria, Vienna, Austria

Boise Art Museum, Boise, ID

USEU Mission & Residence, Brussels, Belgium

The Carnegie Institute, Washington, DC

Coca-Cola Corporation, Atlanta, GA

Coopers & Lybrand, Washington, DC

Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO

Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta,  Atlanta, GA

Frito-Lay Corporation, Dallas, TX

GTE, Dallas, TX

Hyatt Regency Hotel, Los Angeles, CA

Georgetown University Spagnuolo Gallery, Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.

Idaho Power, Boise, ID

The Intercontinental Hotel Buckhead, Atlanta, GA

Intergy Corporation, New Orleans, LA

International Finance Corporation Worldbank,
Washington, DC

Life Technologies, Rockville, MD

Lomas & Nettleton, Dallas, TX

The Madeira School, McLean, VA

Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art, Logan, UT

Nordstrom Stores, Seattle, WA

Roswell Museum & Art Center, Roswell, NM

Rosewood Hotel Group, Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands

Signet Bank, Washington, DC

Charles E. Smith Companies, Alexandria, VA

Standard Federal Bank, Troy, IL

The Southland Corporation, Dallas, TX

Teleglobal Communications, Montreal, Canada

The Southland Corporation, Dallas, TX

The World Bank Group, Washington, D.C.

Transamerica Corporation, San Francisco, CA

University of Kentucky Art Museum, Lexington, KY

USA Today, Rosslyn, VA

Vinson & Elkins, Washington, DC

400 First Avenue North • P.O. Box 1679 Ketchum, ID 83340-1679 
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Gail Severn Gallery