Mary Louise Cromar Aro was born in Detroit in 1929. With a Masters of Fine Art (1982) from Wayne State University, Aro developed her own unique style of realism, incorporating a strong sense of abstract space and form. The resulting two-part watercolors combined two seemingly incongruous images: a landscape stretching across the upper edge of the paper and a portrait or object, framed by pure white space, below. The division of the picture plane and the purposeful inclusion of the white background separating the figure or object from the landscape became hallmarks of Mary Aro’s style.
Currently, she continues observing and painting en plein air during the summer months. For the other six months of the year, she works in her studio, creating new imagery and combining the various elements of her multi-part works.