Mary Ann Carroll
Museum of Florida History
Mary Ann Carroll is the only woman among a notable group of Florida Artists known as the Highwaymen. At the age of nine, she moved from Georgia to Fort Pierce, where as a teenager she met Harold Newton. She watched Newton paint a Poinciana tree and immediately was drawn to the medium. Newton helped Carroll with her first painting, after which she went home to her mother’s backyard and began developing her skills. Carroll owned a 1964 Buick Electra, which she drove around the state to such places as Miami, Jacksonville, and Okeechobee to sell her paintings.
Mary Ann Carroll always was a strong and resourceful woman. After her husband left, she had to raise seven children. She held many odd jobs, working as a nurse’s aide, baby-sitter, and house painter to supplement her income. Since the revival of interest in the Highwaymen, her paintings are now in great demand. Her work is noted for her use of vivid colors. Besides being an accomplished painter, Carroll was a musician and gospel singer and could be found on Sundays preaching and singing at her own ministry in Fort Pierce. In 2011, she presented a painting to Michelle Obama at the First Lady’s Luncheon in Washington, D.C.
See one of Mary Ann Carroll’s paintings and paintings by the other Highwaymen at the Museum of Florida History.
Untitled Poinciana Tree
Oil on canvas, 2004
H: 29” W: 35”
Acquired from the artist in 2004
Collection of the Museum of Florida History
The Royal Poinciana is Carroll’s favorite tree and one of her favorite subjects. This colorful tree is perfect for Carroll’s bold, vibrant style. Heavy palette work produces an impression of depth to the vibrant flowers on the Poinciana. Under pink, billowing clouds, the red-orange of the tree contrasts well with the green vegetation and blue water. (From The Highwaymen: A Museum’s Collection, by Michelle Hearn)