Hi! Thanks for visiting my website. I am Gary Marks, an artist exploring the creative realms of medallic design, wall sculptures made of layered wood, and colorful abstract paintings in my unique cubist/color block style.
My art is my visual commentary on life, the value of the individual, and liberation from those things, inward and outward, that confine us and prevent us from reaching our God-given potential as free individuals.
Art Nouveau Master Alphonse Mucha, a devoted patriot of his native Czechoslovakia, was called on to design his nation's paper money shortly after the end of World War I. He was quoted as saying of the experience that it was an opportunity to "talk in my own way to the spirit of the nation, to its eyes which carry thoughts most quickly to the consciousness".
Mucha's quote captures the essence of why I, as a lover of my country and of all peoples, am driven to design and produce art medals, paintings and sculptures celebrating the virtues of individual liberty for all, free thought and expression, love, and liberation from oppression. My art is the art of the free spirit.
It is my aspiration that my art would, by some measure, (as Mucha would say) “talk in my own way” to the spirit of all peoples in a way that ignites and deepens the love of liberty and its anchor in the soul of nations and their inhabitants.
My art background:
- Childhood artist. My genre was graffiti art on the walls of my family home. Much to the chagrin of my parents, and although thoroughly punished, I was a several-time repeat offender.
- Rediscovered my art in 2010 and have been actively engaged since that time. I have no formal art training.
- Member, Montana State Quarter Dollar Design Commission, Appointed by Montana Govenor Brian Schweitzer, 2005 - 2006
- Chairman, City of Whitefish, Montana Sculpture Committee, 2006.
- Master of Ceremonies for the launch/release of the Montana Quarter in Helena, Montana, Appointed by Montana Govenor Brian Schweitzer, 2007.
- Member (2007 - 2015) and Chairman (2010 - 2015), Citizens' Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC), United States Mint. The CCAC is the Mint's design review committee which reviews and recommends all designs appearing on United States coins, national medals and Congressional Gold Medals. Appointed by Secretary of the Treasury John Snow (2007), Reappointed by Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner (2011)
- Member, Linn County Art Guild, Lebanon, Oregon, 2015 - 2018.
- Member (representing the Lebanon community), Percent for Art Committee, Edward C. Allworth Veterans' Home, Lebanon, Oregon, 2015 - 2016.
- Founder and first Chairperson of the Lebanon Arts Commission, 2017.
- Managed the creation of Strawberry Plaza, Lebanon’s downtown art-themed park.
- Restored the historic Lebanon “Welcome” totem pole originally crafted by a Lebanon resident in who was a member of the Tlingit tribe, 2018.
- Facilitated the acquisition of a Heidi Wastweet bas relief sculpture for the Lebanon north entry welcome monument, 2019.
- Commissioned by the Lebanon Arts Commission to create the “This Cat Loves Lebanon” mini-mural art board for display at Strawberry Plaza, 2020-21.
Awards, Honors and News Stories
- Winner, Whitefish Centennial Coin Design Competition, "City Namesake" Category, "Splash of Whitefish" design, 2004.
- Director's Medal, Presented by United States Mint Director Edmund C. Moy for outstanding public service as chairman of the Mint's design review committee, the Citizens' Coinage Advisory Committee.
- Blue Ribbon (1st place), Advanced Abstract Painting Category, "Liberty's Glory" painting, Twin County Fair, Twin Falls, Idaho, 2012.
- White Ribbon (3rd place), Advanced Abstract Painting Category, "True Colors" painting, Twin County Fair, Twin Falls, Idaho, 2012.
- Blue Ribbon (1st place), Advanced Abstract Painting Category, "Queen Sheba" painting, Twin Falls County Fair, Twin Falls, Idaho, 2013.
- White Ribbon (3rd place), Advanced Abstract Painting Category, "Cleo" painting, Twin Falls County Fair, Twin Falls, Idaho, 2013.
- Winner, Ketchum, Idaho 50th Anniversary Commemorative Coin Design Competition, "Celebration of the Arts in Ketchum" Category, "Pizzazz" design, (later became a design for a manhole cover), 2013.
- Winner, Ketchum, Idaho 50th Anniversary Commemorative Coin Design Competition, "Indigenous Wildlife" Category, "Curious" design, (later became a design for a manhole cover), 2013.
- News story, "Coin World" Magazine, "Home Sweet Home" (a story on my "Duchess of Marksova" art medal), August 12, 2014.
- Featured Artist, Linn County Art Guild, Lebanon, Oregon, July-August, 2015
- Distinguished Public Service Award, United States Mint, Washington, D.C., 2015.
- Profile story, "Coin World" Magazine, "Gary Marks: 'It's All About the Art'", July 20, 2015.
- Profile story, "donaldscarinci.com", "Tribute to Gary Marks: 'It's All About the Art", October 12, 2015.
- Profile story, "Numismatic News", "Marks Sees Coins as Art", October 22, 2015.