Mary-Jane Persson

Specialising in Oil Painting, Ceramics and Printmaking

Note About the Artist

Mary-Jane Persson

"Life can feel rather surreal and abstract at times, it can also be very real and hit your heart in a big way, sometimes with enormous joy and sometimes with tears of sadness. 

The movement in my abstract art is influenced by my experience of life which is never static but ever changing.  I express this through the flow and mixture of colours in my painting.  I have a love of the inner contrast of mankind with their shadow side often blinded or masked by their light side; I am fascinated by the contrast of this light and dark and so I spend many hours studying and capturing this phenomena on both the canvas and in my personal poetry.  My poetry expresses far more of my shadow side which generally stays in the background of my life, as does most peoples.  I am intrigued by opposites, like light & dark, male & female, mother & father, life & death; one cannot be without the other. I am a twin and this is what fuels my fascination with opposites, the same in one sense, but different...finding your individuality within your half of the duo, finding the contrast that works between light and dark; an inner journey inspired by duality...all of this is expressed in my art, both in my realism and my abstract work. "                                                                                                      Mary-Jane Persson                   

South African born, Mary-Jane Persson grew up in Swaziland and later lived in Johannesburg, where she completed her schooling at the Rudolf Steiner Waldorf school. Mary-Jane became interested in art in her mid to late teens during her last couple of years at school. She moved from Johannesburg, Gauteng, at age 19, to Durban, Natal, where she studied Fine Art.  She majored in painting and ceramics and qualified in 1996.  Since then, Mary-Jane has moved back to Johannesburg where she has her own studio as well as a small personalised Art School, in Honeydew.

Mary-Jane has spent many years learning and mastering various art mediums from oil painting to ceramics, printmaking to pewter and stained glass.  In her own personal studio, Mary-Jane continues to grow as an artist every day creating in all different mediums.  Her preference is to work on large scale projects ranging from giant oil paintings to sculptural ceramics and printmaking.

Mary-Jane has sold her art world wide and has exhibited in many galleries in South Africa.

Mary-Jane loves to work with and capture light in her oil paintings.  She does this very well on canvas and it can clearly be seen in her forest scenes, dramatic African skies reflecting over water and her expansive landscapes that can envelop the viewer as they stand in front of the canvas.  These paintings stretch beyond their boundaries, losing the viewer in the texture-filled brushstrokes, allowing one to get carried away in the story scene.  The paintings come to life and the journey begins…

“I am fortunate enough to live on a peaceful 10 acre property in Honeydew, where my view extends to the distant Krugersdorp Hill, with only trees, veld, river reeds and tranquil water in my sight.  All of this inspires my paintings of landscapes and abstract art which extend past their boundaries on the canvas.  My colours are influenced by the nature surrounding me and the magnificent African sunsets which I see clearly each evening…

"It has been said that some artists are quite mad. Could it be though, that the rest of the world is enveloped in madness, not taking time out from work to play and express oneself creatively, whatever your chosen creative outlet may be. Could it be that the artist is more sane than the businessman who spends his time in a confined office space, at a desk, often restricted by money, commitments and traffic to and from work...or is the artists madness masked by his freedom and really, the artist is truly the mad one, doing as he loves from his office under the sky?

My belief is creativity is therapeutic and helps us on many different levels.  It is vital to have a creative outlet, especially with the demands of modern life.  We need time out, time to relax and play in the magical world of colour – express our inner selves outwardly and create something wonderfully unique!"                                                                        Mary-Jane Persson

Set among the trees, on a beautiful property in Honeydew, Mary-Jane has opened up an art school for adults and kids. From here, she shares her knowledge of art, specialising in oil painting, colour and sketching.  She encourages  people to find their own creativity, giving them the space to create their own masterpieces, which they enjoy.  Mary-Jane teaches weekly classes as well as part-time art courses.  Mary-Jane also caters for art parties which have proved to be lots of fun. For more info on her classes, courses and parties, please go to 


“I believe painting and drawing are not all about talent – it is a skill that most people can acquire, occasionally with more effort than not, but it can be learnt! I have been teaching since 1997 and I have never had any student unable to learn to create something worthwhile!             

Art is my passion…any and every form of visual art”

                                                                                       Mary-Jane Persson

"Across the Vaal Dam" h 1600mm / w 1400mm
"Whispering leaves" h 1100mm / w 1600mm
"Forest" h 1000mm / w 1500mm COMMISSIONED ( Corpoeate )
"A stillness that follows" h 1000mm / w 1400mm COMMISSIONED ( Corporate )
"Victoria Falls catching the light" h 700mm / w 500mm
"Mini tall stories" h 820mm / w 720mm
"I walked this path and listened" h 1000mm / w 1400mm

More photos of artworks can be seen in the Gallery or Commissioned Works above.

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