Mary Daniel Hobson
Mixed media collage, archival pigment print
This series is about surrender. The willingness to stand in the dark unknown yields an unexpected gift. Here it is a feather, a blessing of beauty and a promise of flight. While making this work, I practiced standing meditation outside at night. If I stood still long enough, a subtle shift would happen and some sense of benevolence would surround me. I wanted these collages – constructed of transparencies, maps, handwriting, stitched tissue and feathers – to honor that feeling of grace.
These images are grounded in place. Coastal Marin County in Northern California has been a source of comfort and inspiration for me for over thirty years. By bottling images of this area and then re-photographing them against a field of blackness, I isolate and transform them into touchstones of an inner territory that is simultaneously wild and peaceful.
This series is dedicated to hope. My process involves photographing people’s arms and asking them to write down their wish for a miracle in the world or in their life. I then create collages from these images and texts and title them with a phrase from the handwritten wish. The completed pieces serve as visual affirmations, emboldening these wishes for positive change.
Mary Daniel Hobson
At the age of 14, Mary Daniel Hobson became captivated by photography and has been pursuing it ever since. Trained as an art historian, she was deeply inspired by her graduate studies of Surrealism to look below the surface and combine photography with mixed media. Whether building layered collages, creating intimate still lives, or bottling photographs in mineral oil, she delights in the tactile and the symbolic. Uniting all of her work is an embedded belief that artwork can convey the complexity of our psychological existence and help us make sense of and navigate an ever shifting world.
Hobson’s work has been widely exhibited and is in numerous collections including the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Albuquerque Museum and the offices of Twitter. Her art can also be found in many publications, most recently in Terry Tempest Williams’ book, The Hour of Land (Sarah Crichton Books, 2016), and in the limited edition artist book, The Man in Bogota (Pacific Editions, 2015).