Mary Lee Warshaw



Mary Lee Warshaw was a beloved member of our community in Corralitos, Watsonville and Santa Cruz in many circles. She lived in Corralitos since 1965. She was a teacher in the public schools and an instructor in the Department of Early Childhood Education at Cabrillo College, worked to help create and sustain the Elkhorn Slough Foundation, the Watsonville Wetlands Watch and worked as an artist and as a curator for the Pajaro Valley Arts Council gallery in Watsonville. Mary was born September 25, 1931. Her parents were Leona and Carl Grove. She was raised in Gardena, California with an extended, close family of grandparents, parents, younger brother, aunts, uncles and cousins. She had good art teachers in both elementary school and at Gardena High School, and was an artist from her earliest years. Mary attended Occidental College and graduated with a degree in education and a teaching credential. After teaching in Monterey, she attended The Art Students League in New York in 1955, studying with Will Barnett and Robert Beverly Hale. In 1956 Mary married Peter Warshaw, and returned to California, where she taught and raised four children. She was divorced in 1978. Mary retired from Cabrillo College in 1992, and in her retirement focused on her art. She was a very active member of arts organizations, art projects and teaching classes in art for children. Her paintings and prints have been widely exhibited at The University of California, Santa Cruz, the Santa Cruz Art League, the Pajaro Valley Arts Council Gallery and other private and public galleries. For many years Mary worked as artist-in-residence at the Elkhorn Slough, and was a collaborator in projects that fostered an appreciation of the wetlands of Watsonville, and the Slough. She supported and celebrated these wetlands and brought other people in to protect these treasures in Watsonville. The wetlands were a source of great inspiration for Mary’s artwork. Mary is survived by her brother Donald Grove, her partner of 30 years Carol Whitehill, her children, Anne Warshaw Eisenmann, Sara Warshaw, Alice Warshaw and John Warshaw, and grandchildren Al Shaw, Leo Shaw, Leah Mancini and Jacob Eisenmann as well as Carol’s children Bret Smith and Dawn Reis, and Carol’s grandchildren Evan and Elliot Collins-Smith. A memorial gathering will be held at 11 a.m. on Sunday November 7 at The Corralitos Women’s Club, 33 Browns Valley Road, Corralitos. In lieu of flowers, donation made me made in Mary’s honor to the Elkhorn Slough Foundation, the Pajaro Valley Arts Coucil or the Watsonville Wetlands Watch.

Published in Santa Cruz Sentinel on November 2, 2010



I am a printmaker, painter and book artist. For twenty years my artwork and my energies have focused on the preservation, restoration, cleaning and promotion of the wetlands and sloughs in my area. I co-directed Flyways Project, an interactive mail art exhibition of the work of sixty-five international women artists on the theme of Flyways, a show that has traveled to 8 venues, including 5 universities.


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