Mara was born to David and Frances Reichert in Los Angeles on November 17, 1955, the oldest of three children. At the age of 30, she moved from her native California to Oahu and four years later settled on Kauai. Soon after moving to Hawaii, she created a T-shirt company, Kaimara, which featured her original designs inspired by the islands. An artist most of her life, Mara’s main body of work was born on Kauai, stirred up and released by the powerful experience of Hurricane Iniki. After Iniki, images poured from her hearts-eye to the canvas.
In 1994 Mara relocated to the Pacific Northwest. With her former husband and beloved friend Bob Friedman, she founded New Moon Visions, a small publishing company that reproduces her images on cards, giclees, posters and other artgifts. Her work can be found in shops across the country and is also featured in books, calendars, magazines and many other publications.
In 1999, Mara and her sister, artist Karen Russo, founded the STREAM School of Art (Sisters Together Rejoicing in Expressive Arts and Magic). STREAM offers classes and workshops in “sacred creative play” to girls and women of all ages. Teaching has been an important aspect of the artists’ life, balancing the solitary passion of creating art with the joy of sharing with her community.
The Triple Goddess Tarot, featuring Mara’s imagery and the writings of Isha Lerner, was published by Bear & Company in 2002. One of nineteen featured artists, five of her paintings were selected for the 2004 Mythic Journeys Art Exhibition honoring Joseph Campbell. A dream was realized when "The Art of Mara Friedman" 2007 wall calendar was produced by Amber Lotus Publishing in the fall of 2006.
Her most recent creation, published in 2010 and co-created with Trinity Harris, is Rainbow Warrior Awaken! Your Journey of Guidance and Healing. This 44 card/book divination set flows from the power of the Sacred Feminine and speaks through the voice of the Grandmother.
Her paintings depicting the grace, beauty and strength of women, have been used by many community service organizations as a visual inspiration for their clients.
For over twenty years, she has been creating paintings that celebrate and honor the Feminine aspect of Spirit. Her imagery draws inspiration from cultures around the world, from the cycle of the seasons and from universal symbols and form. Looking at her work, one can see and feel the blend of many diverse influences ~ the art of O’Keeffe and Chagall; Tibetan, Hindu, Aboriginal, African and Native American art; mystical Sufi poetry and Buddhist teachings. Thru her work, the artist shares her deep appreciation for the exquisite beauty that surrounds us all.
The artist lives and works in the lush green Oregon countryside.
For a catalog and to view her many offerings, contact: 800-701-6984; firstname.lastname@example.org www.facebook.com/newmoonvisions
FROM THE ARTIST
Written Summer 2011
It is a rainy, summer morning as I sit down to write a little about my life as an artist. Looking out at the lush Oregon forest, I reflect back on the past thirty years from the perspective of a 55 year old woman. As I sip my tea, I am deeply grateful to have the opportunity to be an artist-dreamer is these highly technological times.
Last night, I visited with two lovely friends who so reminded me of myself when I was young… both artists with vulnerable hearts, both learning to navigate the often overwhelming complexities of the inner and outer worlds. At their age, I lived in Los Angeles and worked at a job that paid well, but depleted my soul. At 27 my father passed, at 28 I divorced, and at 29, I found myself in the midst of a health crisis. Through these challenges, I learned that when we are not aligned with our Soul, the suffering felt is the key that opens the door to a more authentic way of being. Thus, at age 30, when an unexpected opportunity presented itself, I look a leap of faith away from my difficult situation and landed on the island of Oahu. This move marked the beginning of my journey of creating a nourishing lifestyle that resonated with the dream in my heart.
Like a caterpillar in her cocoon, I slept most of my first year in Hawaii. When I recovered my energy, I began my first venture as a working artist, creating handmade clothing to sell at local craft fairs. The founding of my own company - Kaimara - was a major stepping stone in my growth as a self-employed female artist. Within four years another major change occured when I moved to the island of Kauai, and began painting full time. Kauai was (and still remains) my heaven on earth. It was there, surrounded by exquisite light, bountiful vegetation and the turquoise sea, that these images of the Feminine Spirit began to emerge.
I always knew intuitively that I wanted to be an artist, though how (and if) this calling would express itself was a mystery. Highly sensitive and empathetic, I feel life intensely, both the joy and the sorrow, and I have often struggled with inner turmoil. This internal pressure longs for release, and for me, this release is found in the deeply transformative and magical practice of putting paint to canvas. The communion that I feel between myself and Spirit when I create has been a great solace and blessing.
As a newborn, I was a premie and did not have the chance to properly bond with my mother. Thus a great need to create a grounding connection with the essence of the Divine Mother has been a prime impulse behind my work. It is interesting that although I have never given birth, over and again, I pour my energy into the birth of my “babies” (my paintings) as a way of self-discovery and healing. I continually repeat the process of diving within the well of Soul, swimming in its fertile depths and rising up with images that express not only my personal path, but also the universal journey of being a Woman.
These are some of the questions that silently echo within my work.
How do we as women connect to the power and wisdom of our Mother Earth and know Her power as our own?
How do we connect with the Beauty of our soul and share our unique gifts of expression with the world, as acts of healing for our self and other?
I am continually guided by the tender truth of this quote by Rumi,
“Let the Beauty you love be what you do.”
With deep appreciation for your interest and support of my work, Mara
My work reflects the changing seasons as they circle by
the dance of light and shadow
the spiraling rhythm of going within and reaching out
the movement of energy thru and around the body…
all swirling melodies contained within the deep stillness of Knowing.