Mary Ann Crago has loved being a part of the Columbus art scene. She graduated from the Columbus College of Art & Design in 1995 with a fine arts degree, then took a bit of a break. Over the past seven years, she’s been more active in the art scene.
Amy Witt and Mary Ann Crago, art collectors.
“I have friends who are also artists- just seeing them do what they do, inspired me to get it going again,” she says. “If I didn’t do it, I would miss it a lot.”
She moved to her home in Westgate about 9 years ago and that is when she became a collector as well as a producer. Her partner Amy Witt likes to give her gifts of art, and whenever they go on a vacation, they bring home a piece of artwork.
Much of Crago’s own early work was painting landscape-inspired pieces. Her style has since evolved into a mixed media assemblage. She likes to put old things together and add in paper and clay pieces. Her pieces are usually smaller works, so when she was asked to create a large work for the CAW: Creating Our History show that was at the Fort Hayes Shot Tower Gallery last April, “it was a challenge,” she says.
Crago has her studio inside her home and finds it inspiring to have other artists’ works around her. “It’s good art karma,” she says.
When she was in college, she traded a lot for pieces and wishes she had done more of that. The early pieces she collected reflected her personal art style. Now that her style has changed, so has her collection.
Crago likes to exhibit her work at one or two festivals each year. She usually participates in LilyFest, a weekend long festival during mid-July in Hocking County. She also participated in the Upper Arlington Labor Days Arts Fest and just concluded a show for the S.Dot Gallery.
You can find her at the Westgate Arts in the Park on Sunday, September 30.
“I enjoy the festival setting,” says Crago. It gives people a chance to interact with the artists and Crago enjoys that exchange. She is particularly excited to have a new art event in her neighborhood.
“Any way to support the neighborhood and lift it – we’re kind of all about that,” she shares. Now on to the collection!
Loveless Cafe in Tennessee (Witt's parents live in TN. left). Photograph from Wilmington, NC, from a vacation. (middle top). Untitled, by Mary Ann Crago (middle bottom). Untitled, by Sharon Dorsey (top right). "I can't breathe" by Melissa Moss (bottom right).
Rotating North Market posters by Clinton Reno (left). "King Size Whoop Ass" and "Corn Dog" by Spalding Studio (right).
Postcard by Georgia O'Keeffe (bottom left). "I'm Listening" by Adam Brouillette (middle). "Untitled" by Mary Ann Crago (right).
"Guardians of my dreams" by Mary Ann Crago (Large piece third from left). "Birch" by Tracy Melton (Three other pieces).
"Over the Moon" (top left) and "Hillside Trees" (bottom left) by Jane Heath. "Dawn" by Laine Bachman (right).
"Bad Hare Day" Sharon Dorsey (top).
"Her Companion Lady" and "Giddy-up Horse" by Stephanie Rond (top left). Untitled by Jane Akison (bottom far left). "Yellow Landscape" by Katy Bergman Cassell (bottom middle). Untitled by Anne L. Holman, 2002 (right).
"Untitled" by Kate Morgan (left). "City Bird" by Laine Bachman (top right). Spirit Shaker by Jon Baring Gould (bottom right).
"Two Bluebirds" by Tammy Smith. Head Jug, February 2011, by Terry King of King's Family Pottery, a fourth generation potter, Seagrove, NC.
"Horizons 3" by Mike Litzau (left). "Untitled" by Candra Boggs (top right). "F3 at 900 Yards #2" by Jeff Regensburger (middle right). "Untitled" by Meghan Sours (bottom right).
Living Room Display.
"Untitled" by Ginnie Baer (clockwise from top left). "Tree" by Seth Fitts. "Untitled" by Staci McKnight Maney. "Study 11/25/11 #1" by Laura Alexander. "Untitled" by Joe Engel. "One" by Mary Ann Crago.
"Untitled" by Kate Morgan (top). "Untitled" by Wallace Peck (bottom left). "Untitled" by Kate Morgan (bottom right, top). "Orange Tree" by Seth Fitts (bottom right, bottom).
"Leap of Faith" print by Lynn Whipple (left). "Violet" by Mary Ann Crago (top right). Illustration by Aline Yamada (middle right). "Going Round and Round" Linocut by Jan Heath (bottom right).
"Stink Eye" by Dan Gerdeman (left). Sculpture by Tim Young (right).
"Beach House" by Theodore Witt (Amy Witt's grandfather). (top left). Sculpture by Tim Young (detailed above). Photograph, Mary Ann and Amy. "Tiny Leaf" by Rebecca Smith (far right). Illustration by Aline Yamada (detail above).
"#35" by Jeff Regensburger (left). "Spurned" by Mark Brabant (right).
"It is Illegal to display dyed chickens for sale" by Stephanie Rond (left). "Still Life" by Rebecca Masters (right).
"Mix Tape" by Spalding Studio (left). "Untitled" by Katie Niewierski (right).
"Reminds Me of Christmas" by Mary Ann Crago.
"Untitled" by Scott Woods (top left). "Untitled" by Amy Nimon (top middle). "Bonafoux" found by family on a trip to France (middle, 3rd down). "Untitled" by Jenny Young (middle, bottom). "Colleen" by Steve Spicer (top right). "Untitled" by Stephanie Rond (middle right). "Blueberry Study" by Rebecca Masters (bottom right).
Detail of "Blueberry Study" and "Bonafoux"
Katy Bergman Cassell
Mary Ann Crago
Jon Baring Gould
Terry King, King Family Pottery
Amy Nimon, Blue Shoe Gallery in Lancaster
Staci McKnight Maney
Do you have an art collection you would like to share? Please contact me at Anne@columbusunderground.com.