Shirley Mariani (b.1941, California) grew up in Georgia and on the family farm in a small Midwestern town. Her imagination was influenced by an emblematic horizon that was offered the possibilities of bright lights and big dreams, beyond the American farmlands. Journeys across the states and moving often brought many tales, opportunities, and changed her life.
Art is a medium in which Mariani expresses herself by bringing memories of her past into her present life. She loves abstract and calls it both a piece of heaven and a representation of herself. "I think I've been abstract my whole life and it's a representation of how I see all things. I did abstract things. In fact, I think my whole life has been an abstraction. As a child on the farm I would work in the garden and I would think, vegetables are strange, unique, curious. Whereas the barn, which you see often in my work, represented stability for me."
Reflections of rural living are prominent in Mariani's art works. From chairs, rockers, porches, and porch swings to barns, farm animals, gardens and fields, clotheslines and family, she creates abstracted patchwork quilts out of her past.