Category Archives: Visual Art

Nest paintings heading to Rufus Drum Shop

Mary Bennett_AboveFromBelow
Above From Below 36″x36″ $900
Ledges 36″x36″ $900
Trashed, 36″x36″ $900

As part of Artists in our Midst, we all exhibit paintings around the hood. I’m delighted that three of my large nest paintings are heading to Rufus Drum Shop, West 10th just west of Alma. Circles right? drums! nests!

Also it’s very near to where I’ll be on the weekend of June 18-19 with Jackie Conradi-Robertson at 3625 West 11th.

Allan at the Drum Shop is great. Drop in and say hi to him and my nests.


Make your own finger labyrinth – playdate workshop

A labyrinth is usually a pattern that you walk as a meditation. A finger labyrinth you let your fingers do the walking (to use the old Yellow Pages slogan).

It might be on a wall or on a table or on a cloth that you bring out now and again.

I’ll be scheduling a mixed-media workshop for making your own finger labyrinth, starting with collage and adding on paints, gels, mediums. Stay tuned.

I’ve done two medium-sized ones

16″x16″ From Alpha to Omega and Home Again


12″x24″ Journey Inward

This large one is 30″x40″ and has a T.S. Eliot poem. On the way in you read every second word and on the way out you read the other words.

What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from.

We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.
T. S. Eliot

In the workshop, we’ll probably work on 16″x16″. But if you make your own it could be larger but probably not smaller, unless you’re primarily using it as a visual reminder.

I’m working on a series of 8″x8″ mini labyrinths that are a bit small for walking, even with fingers, but could operate something like a mandala to trigger a “labyrinth experience” – You “walk” it with your eyes.

Labyrinth Paintings

LabyrinthTSEliot Canybrinth WhiteCentre floodstreams1 MindtheTruth TrueMoon loseaday gainadayIt’s very gratifying to get nice feedback on my art up at the Unitarian Church of Vancouver (49th & Oak). They started with maps and journeys and many of them wound up being based on the labyrinth pattern.  I’ve still got a few more in progress, from small (6″x6″) to a large one (24″x60″) that are perplexing me. I sometimes think I should have a time lapse camera on them and some way to click Ctrl-Z to go back in time when I’ve veered off in a direction I don’t like.

Here are some of the paintings that are finished and on display.


In The Foggy Dew

When it was so foggy earlier this year, I googled “nests fog” and got inspired Mary Bennett_InTheFoggyDewto try some techniques to make a painting look foggy.

This has a lot of zinc white with Kroma acrylic medium dripped and sloshed on in various layers.

When it gets foggy again, I’ll try it again.



Or as I would say, “Abstract??!!”

This piece started from a photo looking up at heron nests in Stanley Park.

It evidently became an abstract painting. A friend and colleague thinks that’s the direction I’m going in.

Mary Bennett_AboveFromBelow

Helliwell Diptych: Sea and Sky

A diptych 48″ x 48″ (each piece is 24″ x 48″) inspired by the view from the top of Helliwell Bluffs on Hornby Island.

Mary Bennett_SkyAtDawn
Sky at Dawn 24″ x 48″ $400
Mary Bennett_TheRoilingSea
The Roiling Sea 24″ x 48″ $400


I’ve painted on Helliwell many, many times. Tiny watercolour postcards to large mixed-media pieces. I also took a photography course there once and still enjoy the photos although ultimately returned to painting as my preferred genre.

Twirl @VPL

TwirlMediumSquare is one of my favorite formats.  And 16″x16″ is a nice size. I named it Twirl and it’s inspired by a photo of a raven’s nest right on a cliff overlooking the ocean.

This one I did a similar scene much larger (36″x36″) too, which I called “Sprawl”.

The twigs are strips cut from an Oxford English Dictionary – Compact version.

It’s part of my Incubating Poetry series – just as eggs need to incubate before hatching, it takes a lot of words to incubate before a poem emerges.

Until May 6, you can see Sprawl and also Ledges at the West Point Grey Library on West 10th. Drop in and have a look as you take your books out.

There’s also two pieces from my “Genetic Scripture” series honouring Charles Darwin’s bicentennial of this birth.


Tension of Opposites

This series of four paintings were done to honour my friend Bill Mountain who died in September, 2012. They take excerpts from his journals and in some cases “doodles”.

We were both very interested in Jungian psychology including the idea of a “tension of opposites”.

Here’s an ekphrastic poem by my friend Franci Louann, written when these pieces were first shown. Now they’ll be at the Unitarian Church of Vancouver from November 12 through mid-December, 2013. They’re in the Fireside Room.


four small abstracts in blue—by Mary Bennett (2011)

mixed media magnetic poetry on wood panel each 6” x 6”

Transformation Complex, Naked

regeneration transformation different

(his words, his fine hand)

an abstract black star

eight lines do not

intersect perfectly


Slightly Askew Ironic, Metamorphic

here I am picture on the wall

still looks like it’s hanging slightly askew

(his words, his journal)

a yellow (safety?) net

forms on the right side


Not Right! Wrong! Good, Bad

no! not right (his words, so many times)

a multi-coloured net at the bottom

two black sign posts

messages not visible

a snow-capped Mountain


Ready For It Explicit, Illusionary

daily ready weekly varied

sago? (his words, more mysterious)


a gauze funnel

welcomes wisdom


I press against the display case, read small words…

the soft blue backgrounds comfort…

I see his blue eyes…

mine fill with tears…

Franci Louann February 24, 2012


art show by Mary Bennett and Louise Bunn in the Amelia Douglas Gallery

4th floor, Douglas College, February 23—April 6, 2012

Tags: Art memorial experimental
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