I received my new issue of Gateway- The Community Newsletter of Pratt Institute in the mail today. Browsing through it, I learned of the passing of Mary Buckley Parriott. Mrs. Buckley (as we knew her) was my teacher foundation year for the Light, Color and Design course, and truly taught me to LOOK at light, color and the relationships between the two. I have thought of her often over the years and continue to remember her as I notice the red light filtering through the trees at sunset in my backyard. I continue to remind myself to pay attention and truly look, as well as pass on her teachings to my students and my own children, urging them to lift their eyes from their books or ipods to truly look out the car window and notice the beauty in simply looking.
This news comes at the heels of learning about the death Louise Bourgeois another artist whose work I have always responded to and loved. Truly an icon and a pioneer, I remember seeing her in person at the Max Hutchinson Gallery in Soho in 1980-81 where I had my real first art job as a gallery assistant. Max represented Louise, and there she was at an opening – diminutive with her long graying hair in a pony tail wearing a tuxedo T-Shirt!
As I work in my studio these days, preparing for my window installation on 38th St. in NYC, I think of her work and how it first influenced me as a young art student and continues to resonate with me as a mature woman and artist.
I too was a student of Mary and Joe at Pratt. Mary also taught me to look and see. I will miss them both. Joe believed in me enough to allow me to enter the MID program with my undergraduat work in biology! I am forever greatful to them both. Jim Buettner