Welcome to Mamamia’s art endeavour, the Voulez-Vous Project.
Every week we celebrate emerging artists, designers, illustrators and creators. Our aim: to help the internet become a slightly more beautiful, captivating, or thought-provoking place by making art accessible. Click here to see all the previous Voulez-Vous posts.
Marianne McGinnis is a New York City based artist, who creates incredibly unique and dreamy paintings of the fashionable women she spots around the city.
Growing up in a big Irish and Italian family, McGinnis was surrounded by creatives. Artists, designers, writers, musicians and cooks filled her childhood, and creativity was prized in her home.
“I always say that my mother Diane could have been the creative director for Vogue if she didn’t have to raise us 6 kids! Instead, she was our very own creative director,” McGinnis says.
“That’s the environment I grew up in, we were very much encouraged to express ourselves visually, musically and at the stove. My mother was a huge influence. She used to draw fashion illustrations of women on paper napkins after dinner and I remember being mesmerised and so proud that I had such a talented mother. She was my my biggest influence. She loved fashion and personal style and I followed her lead,” McGinnis says.
McGinnis’s work reflects her New York City life, and the women she sees around the city. She very much considers herself a storyteller, painting the individual women she sees around the city. She will get inspiration for her subjects when she is travelling on the subway and walking around the city. McGinnis works on NYC’s most fashionable street, Madison Avenue, so she is surrounded by the most stylish women, and can find inspiration for her work effortlessly.
“As soon as I begin a painting, a person begins to emerge and she has a narrative, however vaguely it reveals itself to me. I really think that being a visual artist is like being a singer. You just open your mouth and it comes out, sounding or looking, like you. My work reflects the way I see fashionable women, savvy, intelligent and with something to say,” McGinnis explains.
As well as being inspired by the women who wear the clothes, McGinnis also finds inspiration in fashion designers themselves. Chanel, Oscar de la Renta, Max Mara, J.Crew, and my favorite, Valentino, (who, she tells me, is going to make her wedding dress someday, when, in her words, “I have the money, and the fiancee’!”)