Gallery MAR celebrates five with ‘Five’
Maren Bargreen Mullin opened Gallery MAR in 2008.
Her vision was to feature fine abstract, contemporary and noncommercial art.
In January 2012, in the middle of the Sundance Film Festival, the gallery moved from
its original spot at 580 Main St. to a more accessible space up the street at 436 Main St.
This year, Gallery MAR is celebrating its five-year anniversary, and Mullin came up
with intriguing way to commemorate.
She conceived "FIVE: the Fifth Anniversary Show," an exhibit comprised of works
by some of the Gallery MAR artists. The catch is they had to create works that dealt with
the number five.
The artists could use the number in their works or feature five focal points or objects
to convey the idea, Mullin told The Park Record.
"I am continually interested by how artists interpret an idea or guideline," Mullin
said. " giving a little directive, like the idea of five, you open up the artist to a new
approach to their painting or sculpting. It also allows the artist to try something new and
branch out of their typical body of work, which can be very freeing. (Because) to be an
artist is to push limits, to expand on what you have previously seen and done."
Mullin invited 20 of her artists, who are based all around the country, to participate.
Those artists include Bridgette Meinhold, Maura Allen, Nina Tichava, Matt Flint,
George Bodine, Ron Russon, Joe Norman, Ronald Ray Rogers, Warren Neary, Brian
McGuffey, Adam Winegar, Patrick LoCicero and Charles Keiger.
Mullin was amazed at the response.
"It’s hard to fathom how creative everyone is at the gallery," she said. "The
interpretations have all been different, and while each piece is representative of the
individual artist, they are all distinctive."
As the works arrived, Mullin wanted to keep them for herself, which, she said, is a
lovely (and constant) problem for all gallery owners.
"It has truly felt like a birthday celebration, opening packages of the artists’ works as
they arrive," she said. "One of the pieces even features a birthday party scene, (and) there
is a series with five-pointed stars, while another is a bouquet of birthday sunflowers. All
are appropriate for a contemporary mountain ascetic."
The past five years have passed quickly for Mullin.
"Starting out in the depths of our recession, in 2008, was a challenge, but I am
continually grateful to my artists and our collectors," she said. "We at Gallery MAR, are
able to connect the two, which is incredibly rewarding. (That) is my favorite part of
working in a gallery, and I think our collectors can sense that.
"We are also fortunate to have an incredibly supportive arts community in Park City,
and we’ve had a lot of fun with nonprofit events and gallery strolls, all while raising
money for other nonprofits and arts groups," Mullin said. "I have a talented and
authentic staff and the support of my husband, and we are looking forward to another five
years on Main Street. Funny — it used to be a big deal that I was so young to be starting
a business (at 25), and after five years and some new laugh lines, no one even
The Gallery MAR, 436 Main St., will celebrate its five-year anniversary with free
reception on Friday, July 26, from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. The event will kick off The "FIVE"
exhibit that feature 20 artists utilizing the number or concept of five in their art. For
more information, visit http://www.gallerymar.com .
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