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The light of Day

“One of the very outstanding students” was what Hans Hofmann, whose students included Robert De Niro Sr., Helen Frankenthaler, John Grillo, Lee Krasner, George McNeil, and Worth Ryder; wrote about Mary Rogers. Mary Rogers' (1911-1974) work is best viewed through the lens of Abstract Expressionism. This movement, informed by Cubist structure and Fauve color, is the first truly home-grown American visual arts movement. and marks a major turning point in the international recognition of American painting which, up to the mid-20th century, had largely been looked down upon. Abstract Expressionism had as one of its leading luminaries Hans Hofmann, perhaps best known for his technique of “Push and Pull,” by which depth and dynamics were brought into abstract art through the use of planes and color juxtapositions. Hans Hofmann has been referred to as the most influential fine arts teacher of his time. Unfortunately, his recognition as a painter may well have suffered from his stubborn dedication to teaching combined with the lack of esteem in which American society often holds its teachers. Mary Rogers studied under Hofmann in both New York and Provincetown at various times over a period of 8 years. He referred to Rogers as having “a vital sensing of space in a formal compositonic sense as well as in realization through colour” (Hofmann was well known for his German-inflected use of the English language.) Mary Rogers was from a period during which female artists struggled for recognition, and this is reflected in their being under-represented to this day. Nevertheless, Rogers was able to graduate from group shows in the Boston area to solo shows further afield, including in New York City and Washington D.C. Furthermore, Mary Rogers had collectors in Boston, Washington D.C. and Port Arthur, TX. One of the last pieces of documentary evidence from her career, dated December 13, 1973, concerned the shipment of 4 of her paintings to Munich, Germany. At the time of her death, her paintings hung, among other places, at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, then the largest non-federally-funded art museum in Washington D.C.; and Gracie Mansion, New York City’s official Mayoral residence. Mary Rogers’ two daughters lived, and raised families, on the West Coast of Canada and in Switzerland, which made coordination concerning their mother’s artistic legacy challenging. This, combined with a lack of knowledge about her dealer and limited understanding of the fine arts world, resulted in her art going into storage shortly after her death in 1974, where it remained until very recently. Mary Roger’s oils, watercolors and charcoals are now seeing the light of day for the first time in close to 50 years. As her grandson, it is my hope that you will both enjoy and appreciate them. Should you be interested in any of these artworks, all of which have impeccable provenance, please click on the image for more information and feel free to contact me.


Mary C. Rogers, February 23, 1911 - February 5, 1974


     Massachussetts College of Art (1940-1944)                   

     School of Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (1945-1947) 

     Hans Hofmann School of  Fine Arts (1951-1958)

Teaching positions:

     Chamberlayne Junior College (1961-1964)

     New England School of Art (1961-1967)

Grants & Fellowships:

     Rockefeller Travelling Exhibition Grant -- group show of New England artists (1959-1960)

     John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship -- Qualified for award consideration              (1969-1970)

Exhibitions & Notables:

     Boston Arts Festival (Juried shows, 1954, 56, 58 through 68)

     Shore Studio Galleries (Boston, solo show, 1957)

     Origo Gallery (Washington D.C., solo show, 1960)

     Pietrantenio Gallery (NYC, group show, 1960)

     Key Gallery (NYC, group show, 1960)

     Key Gallery (NYC, solo show, 1962)

     Dunbarton Galleries (Boston, solo show, 1962)

     Hooper Mansion (Marblehead MA, invitational solo, 1963)

     Institute of Contemporary Art, Rental Gallery (Boston, group shows, 1962, 63, 64 and 1968)

     NYC (solo show, February 1964)

     Boston University Art Gallery (invitational group show, 1964) 

     New England Artists Exhibition (juried group show, 1968)

     Per recommendation of Prince Alexis and Princess Maria Theresa Droutzskoy, painting gifted to

         Berry College for inclusion in Martha Berry Museum collection (1971)

     Four paintings shipped to Munich, Germany (1973)

     Paintings hang in Corcoran Gallery, Washington D.C, and Gracie Mansion, NYC (1974) 


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