Mary Weatherford (b. 1963, Ojai, California) has become increasingly recognized as one of the leading painters of her generation, as well as one of the most astute and daring practitioners taking on the legacies of American abstraction. As she explores and expands the medium’s possibilities, she honors its history by seizing opportunities to break with tradition at every turn. Over the course of her career she has produced feminist revisions of large-scale Color Field painting, posited new directions for the landscape genre, and explored the social histories of California. Her notable incorporation of sculptural elements––including the neon tubes that have been a presence in her work since 2012 ––as well as her fearless and physically embodied approach to painterly gesture, have allowed her to employ abstraction as both a formal language and a poetic, highly personal mode of engagement with the world outside the studio.
Mary Weatherford is the subject of a retrospective exhibition at the Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, New York, which will travel to SITE Santa Fe. Other solo exhibitions include shows at the Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum, Claremont McKenna College, Claremont, California (2014); Todd Madigan Gallery, California State University at Bakersfield, California (2012); LAXART, Los Angeles (2012). She has been included in numerous survey and biennial exhibitions, including The Forever Now: Contemporary Painting in an Atemporal World, Museum of Modern Art, New York (2014). Her work features in the permanent collections of many museums, among them the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Tate Modern, London; Brooklyn Museum, New York; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts; and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. In 2019, Lund Humphries published a monograph dedicated to an in-depth survey of the artist's oeuvre. Weatherford lives and works in Los Angeles.