Available Work



Mary Kay West was born in Asheville, North Carolina in 1954 to parents that encouraged her artistic expression from the earliest age.  Her mother was an established watercolorist and father an intellectual academic. An idyllic childhood fell to a rebellious adolescence. West left home, moved across the United States, and became a mother herself at the age of sixteen. With only a 9th grade education and the responsibilities of early motherhood, she was able to complete her education. She obtained a Master of Arts Degree in Clinical and School Psychology and practiced for fourteen years.

The artistic and creative urge finally came to the surface in the mid-1980’s when West became a clothing and accessory designer of wearable art that was carried by Macy’s and Nordstrom department stores. By 1990, world-famous fresco artist Benjamin F. Long IV moved to Asheville and opened an atelier to carry on the classical realist tradition. Mary Kay West was accepted as an apprentice and completed her studies specializing in Still Life and Landscape painting in 1994. That same year, she moved to Santa Barbara, California to be nearer her daughter. Since then, West’s work has been exhibited extensively in California, and is distinguished by her passion for birds as she portrays them in her inimitable trompe l’oeil style.

Throughout West’s journey as a psychologist and as an artist, the practice and science of Yoga has been a constant. She has been an avid practitioner and teacher, rising to the level of master instructor. Her spiritual and metaphysical practice is the foundation of her creative expression. Mary Kay West now lives, practices, teaches and paints in Guadalupe, California.

Artist Statement
“When I sit at the easel and am in the process of creating my work, I carefully and methodically study the subject before me, not with a judgmental eye, but with an open mind, taking in everything without preconceived ideas or conditioned thinking. It is then that I can move into a mental state of appreciation and gratitude for the beauty that is in things. It is my hope that my work brings a similar state of mind to the viewer and that positive effects may go well beyond the panel and into the world.”

Selected Collections
Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum Permanent Collection

Selected Awards and Honors
2015 – 2023   Selected into California Art Club’s Annual Gold Medal Exhibition

2019 – 2022   Art Renewal Center International Salon Finalist

2022               Art Renewal Center 16th International Salon Staff Award

Press and Publications

American Legacy Fine Arts presents Mary Kay West featuired in Pasadena Audubon Society magazine, The Wrentit, Fall 2023

Mary Kay West Featured in Pasadena Audubon Society Magazine, The Wrentit, Fall 2023

An Orange-brested Bunting perched on a blue-and-white Chinese porcelain vase overflowing with hydrangeas, a Blue Flycatcher eyeing some ripe persimmons from atop a silver goblet, and a dazzling pair of …

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American Legacy Fine Arts featured in AMericna Art Collector Magazine, May 2023.

American Legacy Fine Arts Featured in American Art Collector Magazine, May 2023 Issue

In its definition of “still life”, the Tate museum in London states, “In the hierarchy of genres (or subject types) for art established in the 17th century by the French …

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American Art Collector Magazine, December 2022 Issue

Mary Kay West in American Art Collector Magazine December 2022 Issue

More than two dozen of the top artists working today have been invited to showcase their artwork during the Artist’s Choice exhibition at American Legacy Fine Arts in Pasadena, California.

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