Mark M Garrett

Early Southern Riser


Very little prepared me for this particular path in life... or so I thought. As a child of the 1960's I absorbed the world outside of Manchester,TN mostly thru television and occasional trips to Nashville. The culture wars and trends of that era trickled down to us via TV, newpapers, National Geographic, Life Magazines, big coffee table books, and the conversational rants & ramblings filtered thru my parent's dense cigarrette smoke and alchohol fueled cocktail parties. I feel fortunate that I was a by-product of a politically moderate if not progressive home for that time and place. Daddy was a small town lawyer with a steady measured egalitarian demeanor remnicent of Atticus Finch with an office on the court house square. Momma was a housewife with a tender loving soul and a tireless need to please... mostly at a great expense to herself. As the last of 6 kids, I spent considerable amounts of time alone in nature. We lived near dense woods and were often left to our own devices. Relative to today, it was an era with a much more hands-off approach to child rearing. Allowing nature, the environment, & the cycle of the seasons to serve as both teacher and babysitter. 



My sense of comfort with the outdoors and a trust in the natural order of plants and animals felt like part of the background of life. Over time  this also became the subtle fuel for much of my present creativity.

My visual take on the world is perpetually filtered through a lense of the organic structure of life and the landscape as I percieved and remembered it through the cycling seasons of my childhood.

It was a rich and fertile place of origin and always finds its way (however abstractly) to the artwork I make today.

My rural southern roots run deep.


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