© 2019 by The Coutts Museum of Art

110 N Main St. El Dorado, KS 67042

The Works of Martha McKay

Martha McKay

November 2 - December 31

Martha’s passion for art began when she was in the third grade and her teacher introduced her to painting at her elementary school in Kansas City, Missouri.  She continued to explore this gift by taking art classes in high school, then majoring in Commercial Art at the University of Kansas.  When World War II broke out in 1942, she had to leave college and was hired by Western Auto in Kansas City Missouri to design and model for their magazine ads.  Following the end of the war, Martha married her college sweetheart, Jim McKay, and they moved to El Dorado where Jim entered law practice with his father.  Her painting was put on hold while she raised her three children.

 

Once her children became independent, she pursued her talent again, but with more vigor.  She opened an art studio on Main Street in El Dorado, where she invited prominent Kansas guest artists to teach workshops and exhibit their works.  Initially, oils were her medium, then she moved to watercolor.  Her strong faith created a natural love of nature, which is the theme of most of her paintings.  Hilton Head holds a special place in her heart, where Martha and Jim owned a condominium for many years.  Her love for the beach is evident in her paintings.  She painted from memory places where she had traveled, such as the Colorado mountains, and scenes from the Flint Hills area.  Martha is very humble about her work.  She has given most of her paintings to family and friends.  Some were donated for worthy causes and sold in auctions.

 

Several years after the death of her husband, Martha moved to a retirement community in Frisco, Texas, where she initiated a painting group.  The group is still going strong.

Her painting continued into her early 90’s.  Due to vision challenges, she has had to lay her paints aside.  Her apartment is adorned with her life works, many of which are presented in this exhibit.  Family and friends display her paintings proudly in their homes.