Mary Ann Aitken 1960 – 2012
Mary Ann Aitken was born in 1960. She grew up in Detroit and attended Wayne State University where in 1983 she received a Bachelors of Fine Arts. She continued her education by receiving a Masters in Art Therapy in 1989. During those years she maintained a studio in the Cary Building in downtown Detroit. Those years were some of her most productive. She devoted her time to painting and while shy about showing the work, she maintained a rigorous work ethic throughout her life.
Shortly after receiving her masters she made the bold decision to move to New York city. She was an art therapist for Woodhull Hospital in Brooklyn were she worked for 22 years assisting patients in their personal struggles, teaching them tools necessary to express themselves through art.
“Art is a part of my life—it belongs to me. No one can touch that. –Mary Ann Aitken
No one can take that away from me”.
Mary Ann considered Detroit her second home after her move to New York, but made frequent visits especially during the holidays. Her father Robert and mother Mary still live in the Detroit home where Mary Ann and her sister Maureen and brother Joe grew up. The last few years, as she battled breast cancer, Mary Ann enjoyed coming home for the summer to spend long extended periods with her family at their cottage in Amherstburg, Canada. She died January, 2012 in Brooklyn, New York.
She exhibited her paintings, drawings, and photographs in several group shows in Brooklyn, New York as well as Detroit. In June, 2013 a major retrospective exhibition of her work will premier at two galleries in Detroit. A catalog of her paintings and drawings will accompanying the exhibitions.