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The Women Behind The Lens IV

gray wild horse peeking over another horse

"A fresh and innovative perspective on the contributions of female artists to the fine art world."

YJ Contemporary Gallery

This month I am truly honored to be included among a group of talented female photographers being recognized by YJ Contemporary Gallery, based in Rhode Island. 

Following are some excerpts from the press release issued about this recognition:

“For the past several years, Brazilian-born wild horse photographer Maria Marriott has tracked and photographed America’s wild mustangs in the most remote regions of the Western United States.

This month she was recognized by YJ Contemporary Art Gallery Women Behind The Lens Exhibition as one of seven photographers bringing fresh and innovative contributions to the fine art world.

YJ Contemporary Gallery annually recognizes fine art female photographers in recognition of Women’s History Month. This fourth annual exhibition honors the “exceptional photographic achievements of women” and “showcases various talented women from across North America, each bringing a distinct and captivating photographic style and genre to the forefront.” 

Joining six other female photographers in the exhibition, Marriott showcases several artworks, including her new release “Whispers of Freedom” from the art series McCullough Peaks Wild Horses.

wild horse photography of two mustangs touching noses

In pursuit of her photographic craft, Marriott says, “I love telling stories, but have found that I can do it more effectively with images than with words. The stories behind my images of the American mustangs are compelling. We see them in their magnificence and also in their hardship. Although I’m an immigrant to this country, I strongly relate to what these wild horses have come to mean in the American story - the quest for freedom, the perseverance through hardship, and the determination to survive at all costs.”

Distinctive Viewpoints of Female Photographers

According to the organizers of the Women Behind The Lens IV exhibition, “The exhibition promises a dynamic experience, seamlessly merging serenity and excitement through visually stunning and intellectually engaging images that unveil female photographers' remarkable vision and talent.” Viewers are invited to explore “the distinctive viewpoints of the individual female photographers participating in this event, appreciating and marveling at their profound insights into the beauty of the world around us.”

wild horse photography hanging on a gallery space

Seeking to change perceptions about the mustangs, Marriott says, “These images of the American wild horses are meant to bring attention to their beauty and their plight. Through my lens, I seek to foster an appreciation for the untamed wilderness, believing that the most persuasive form of advocacy can come through art.

About Maria

wild horse photographer maria marriott

Marriott began honing her craft in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. But her artistic vision began to crystallize after moving to the United States when she found a way to combine her dual passions for horses and photography. 

Through intimate and minimal compositions, Maria tells visual stories of the beauty and mystery of the wild. Her emotional images give viewers a window into a world that most do not know exists. Her images are visual narratives about the qualities that Americans value most - freedom, resilience, grit and perseverance.

Maria Marriott's growing body of work, both wild horse art and equine portraits, has previously been recognized internationally at the Prix De La Photography Paris, the Budapest International Photo Awards, the Tokyo International Foto Awards, the Black & White Spider Awards, and in several other international forums. 

Her work has been showcased in various publications, including Cowboys & Indians, Calling All Horse Girls, 65 Degrees Carmel By The Sea, and other equestrian magazines in the U.S. and Australia.


Marriott’s hope is that her “work will help others feel a strong emotional connection to the American mustangs and the importance they have played in our nation’s history. Ultimately, this is what will help the most in efforts to preserve their freedom.””


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