If art is communication, Mara McWilliams is screaming. Mara McWilliams, a California raised, outsider artist was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder at 19 years of age. For most of her life she fought the demons associated with mental illness, until she decided to use the illness to her benefit.
She hopes that through her art, she can shed light into the darkness that is mental illness. She hopes to show the world that mental illness is not an infirmity but a gift.
The birth of Mara's art came from despair and led her into recovery. For her, art and recovery are inseparable. Mara started painting daily and has found art to be the truest form of self-expression. She chooses to not be restrained by the technical boundaries associated with various the various genres. A self-taught artist, Mara McWilliams art is a reflection of her urban style and West Coast sensibility. Most of her art is done for charity's sake. To the benefit of other's is the essence of Mara McWilliams art and her life.
As an artist, it is Mara's goal to relay the intense feelings associated with mental illness to her audience without stereotypical pretenses or filters. Painting allows that interaction to take place. The paint acts as emotion while the canvas is the treasure chest in which all hopes, fears and vulnerabilities are stored and shared with viewers.
She lends this same gifts to her poetry. Her first book, "Outta My Head and In Your Face" opened to critical acclaim and adorns the libraries of some of the greatest thinkers of our generation. Through her art and poetry, Mara McWilliams hopes to be a hopeful blaring voice for those who are afraid that life ends after diagnosis.