Shelbee’s Lyrical Impressionism

Shelbee Mares Website Photo

Shelbee Mares has been showing at the McCormick Gallery in Taos for over a decade.

In the early years Shelbee attracted new collectors with her flowers and chapels which sold incredibly well, earning her a devoted and loyal following.


As her work evolved and she began experimenting with mixed media – using gold and silver leaf, rice paper, mesh, acrylic and gesso to give texture and depth to her oil canvasses – her subject matter too, changed and began to incorporate the landscape beyond the singular blooms and shrines.


Each summer, during the years she lived here in Taos, she’d return to the Eastern Seaboard where she’d grown up, and the work would take on the lushness of that region while still paying homage to the desolate vastness of the desert she returned to.

Shelbee Mares, Tower of Azul,mixed media, 7x3

An accomplished and skillful artist, Shelbee is a masterful draftswoman as well as a painter; her drawings are spectacular and her love of line and perspective is evident in all of her work, which has become less illustrative and more painterly with time.

Shelbee mares New painting

In recent years, having moved back East so her daughter could finish school there and she (Shelbee) could return to school for her MFA., her paintings have shifted to a more “lyrically impressionistic” style. Interestingly the Northern New Mexico landscape continues to inform the work she is making now, with a sense of space that is as vast as our (N.M.) horizon.

RC and friends

One of the late R.C. Gorman’s favourite artists, (the photo above was taken at the gallery with Michael McCormick), Shelbee still shows exclusively in Taos at the Michael McCormick Gallery. Please visit the link below this post for more information.


All images c/o the McCormick Gallery