Define the perfect person to design and present an art curriculum for children and you are describing Mary Walker-Baptiste. A lover of children, a dynamic experienced teacher, a creative, experimental and inspiring innovator and a nurturer of talent --that's our February Featured Artist!
Mary's parents were artists who surrounded their children with art and artwork. Her brother became an Imagineer for Disney, her sister is a musician and artist, and Mary became an elementary teacher whose classroom always reflected her Art minor, part of her degree from Saint Mary University, Kansas.
(Above and below: Hover your mouse pointer over a painting to stop the slideshow. Click on a painting to see it larger.)
(Right: Hover your mouse pointer over a painting to stop the slideshow. Click on a painting to see it larger.)
Photos by Paul Hartelius
The paintings in Mary's show reflect her exploration of many mediums with a never-ending inquisitiveness into innovative presentations of her art, ranging from collage and Zentangles to watercolor interpretations of photographs from their extensive travels. Her numerous awards include ribbons from Pine Shores, Bergen County and a 2nd place in the Ocean County Senior Citizens Art Exhibit in 2015. Her works are in private collections in 25 states and abroad.
Mary joined Pine Shores about ten years ago and has made invaluable contributions while a member of the Executive Board. She is currently in charge of the Children's Art program at Pine Shores, which offers four program sessions each year. One of Mary's greatest pleasures is in watching her students grow and develop, both as artists and as individuals.
In addition to the Children's Program, Mary adapted an idea for a fundraiser to PSAA needs, and chairs the highly successful and constantly evolving Art Patron Show. She credits her talented poet husband Lou, a Trustee At Large on the Board, with much of the success of both programs.
A few photos of what goes on at Pine Shores Outreach Program (POP) Command Post (was really a training session for April & May art programs for volunteers at area nursing homes)! Training was led by Jill DeFelice and Charleen Leslie.