Lavender Menace Solo Exhibition

The Wauregan Gallery presents

Lavender Menace:

Paintings by Maura McGurk

in Response to Gay Bullying

These paintings were first inspired by the suicides of several teenaged boys in Fall 2010, who were bullied for being gay. Since that time, subsequent incidents of bullying and regrettably, more suicides of boys and girls, have continued to inspire the artwork. The multi-layered paintings use a colorful but sometimes unsettling palette of yellow-greens, pinks, purples, reds, and blacks. Some figurative elements emerge from the abstraction, particularly spindly or cartoonish legs which suggest vulnerability. Expressive bursts of drawing come from a personal sense of urgency and upset over the suicides; many pencil marks are not drawn lines at all, but desperate and furious tracks carved again and again through the paint. Dripping, dangling shapes conjure anguish and heartbreak suggestive of the bullied teens, but also of viewers who look on these stories from a place of adult wisdom and, perhaps, shared experience.

In Secret, Acrylic and pencil on panel, 36" x 48"

Exhibition on view July 1 – 29, 2011

200 Main Street
Norwich, CT
Gallery Hours: Thursdays and Fridays, 3:00 – 5:30, or by appointment (860-608-2661)

Opening Reception:
July 8, 2011
6:00 – 9:00 PM

Take a stand against gay bullying and then enjoy fireworks hosted by the City of Norwich.


Fun Fact

Maura will donate 10% of all proceeds from the exhibition to the It Gets Better Project, to support their work with gay youth. We’d love to see you at the Wauregan Gallery during the month of July, especially during the opening reception, but you don’t have to be there to buy a painting; feel free to browse Maura’s work online and then contact her to purchase a painting. Let’s give It Gets Better a big fat check at the end of July!

Art Info

  • A range of sizes and media will be exhibited, from framed works on paper, to large paintings on wood panel, even an art installation which will be sold off piece by piece.
  • Color and texture are important features of the work, and invite the viewer to examine not only the surface of the painting, but also consider the layers beneath.
  • Even though the subject matter is weighty, the paintings themselves are colorful and often lively because it’s important to me that viewers want to spend time with the artwork.
  • Take a stand against gay bullying by taking home a painting of your own–Dan Savage did!
  • And remember, 10% of proceeds go to the It Gets Better Project.
  • Contact Maura to purchase a painting.



Maura has exhibited her paintings at various venues in New York, New England, and Italy.  One of her sketchbooks toured the United States and can be seen as part of the permanent collection of the Brooklyn Art Library.

She received a grant from the Vermont Studio Center for a residency in 2010, was chosen as one of the Boston Young Contemporaries, and was a recipient of an AHA! Grant from the city of New Bedford, Massachusetts.  Her work is held in over sixty private collections in the United States, Europe, and the Middle East, and is displayed at various Boston-area corporations. She received her MFA in Painting from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.  Maura has taught art at various universities and colleges in the Northeast, as well as in summer programs in Italy and Sicily.

Believing in art’s power to change the world, Maura has also organized an art sale to benefit victims of Hurricane Katrina, and donated artwork to causes such as the Gloria Steinem Art Auction, led by Ms. Steinem, in support of the Women’s Studies Program at UMass Dartmouth.

Related articles from Maura’s Blog–Read All About It:

Contact Information:

4 Replies to “Lavender Menace Solo Exhibition”

  1. Maura,

    My mother was talking with Lorriane about the gallery. She might also invite Allison. Is it to late to invite. I can’t wait.

    –Jen B.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *