Joe Mayer

“Moving from watercolor landscapes to large format abstract paintings in acrylic seemed like a natural progression to me. I refer to my abstracts as ‘music without words’. At 87 years of age I believe that there is no end to learning and growth in this thing of being an artist. I have no memories of being bored for the past 48 years. There is not enough time for that.”

Joe Frederick Mayer

March 27, 1931-January 28, 2020

Artist, friend, and teacher, Joe Mayer died of natural causes on January 28, 2020.
Read his full obituary here.

Joe moved back to Shepherdstown 5 years ago from Santa Fe where he and his wife Ann shared a studio.

After graduating from William and Mary in 1957 with a degree in advertising art he became a staff artist for the McCoy Advertising Studios in Washington D.C. After two years with McCoy he decided to give teaching a try and became a faculty member at Sherwood High School in Montgomery County, MD where he taught Art for ten years. While teaching at Sherwood he earned an MFA degree at Catholic University.

In 1970 he began teaching in the Fine Arts Department at Prince Georges Community College where he became Department Chairman. He retired from the College in 1989. He became interested in watercolor landscape painting beginning in 1970 and from 1976 until 2015 he taught workshops in Europe, Mexico and across the United States.

His work has been exhibited in many galleries including The Gallery of Contemporary Art in Santa Fe, Gallery 54 in NYC, the Baltimore Museum of Art, Gallery Uno in Mexico and the Corcoran Gallery in Washington DC. In 2006 he was awarded the bronze medal in the BWS Mid Atlantic watercolor competition and an honorable mention at the 2007 competition. He also won awards for plain air paintings in Easton, MD and other competitions in the area.

He is past president of the Washington Watercolor Club and the Annapolis Watercolor Society and founder of the Friday Morning Painters in Shepherdstown and Easton and the Shepherdstown Abstract Painters Society (SAPS).
Joe has had three one man shows of his abstract paintings in the past three years. Venues were the Foss Gallery in St Michaels, MD; Tripp Hildebrand Gallery in Easton, MD; and the David McGuire Gallery in Frederick, MD.