About Mary MacCarthy

The commissions I most enjoy are for private clients; creating murals, trompe l'oeil, paintings and screens specific to their houses and their family life. My influences are wide-ranging and eclectic and I get inspired by the shapes, textures and colours found in nature and also by antique textiles, ceramics, medieval painting and ethnic art.

My paintings - mostly domestic still lives and landscapes - have been exhibited in various mixed shows in Norfolk and London and I was Artist in Residence for the Wells-next-the-Sea Poetry Festival May 2011, and exhibited at the Wiveton Cafe in July 2011.

I am also a professional adviser on colour schemes and oversee interior design projects and have worked with Bridgewater pottery, designing one of their best-selling lines – the Rose pattern.

I have contributed to several books on decorative art and my work has been featured in many magazines - including the influential “World of Interiors”. I have written three books “The Arts & Crafts Stencil Book”, “The Craftworkers Pattern Source book” - a compendium of 1000 designs from around the world (both for Crysalis) and "Simple Trompe l’oeil" (Cico Books).

I studied textile design and fine art at Camberwell School of Art from 1968 - 1971 and began working for private clients in England, Europe and America specializing in decorative paint work, stencil design and murals. Inspired by the American naïve tradition, I pioneered in England the revival of the art of stencilling in the early 70s, always using the technique sparingly, never resorting to spray paints, and by treating the stencil as a means to a design rather than an end in itself.