Margaret Ann Kennedy ’48 passed away on September 23rd at Northampton Manor in Frederick, Maryland. Born in Rochester, New York to Dr. Robert and Mrs. Rebecca Kennedy, Margaret was one of six siblings. She was educated at the Harley School and Wells College, where she received a degree in music. Margaret earned a Master of Arts degree in Art History from Oberlin College, a Master of Divinity from Earlham College, and a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Wisconsin. After many years working as an artist and teaching in Richmond, Indiana, Margaret moved to Burkittsville, a tiny town in southern Frederick County, where she lived and worked for almost forty years in her studio and gallery, and where she was elected to the town council.
Over her long career Margaret taught art at numerous colleges, including Frederick Community College. But she was first and foremost a highly productive artist, working in a wide variety of media, ranging from print making and drawing to stained glass and painting in oil and acrylic. Margaret’s brilliantly vivid and inspiring windows, which she crafted and installed piece by piece, grace churches throughout the Midwest, New York and elsewhere. Over the past few decades, Margaret has been known mainly for her large, colorful abstract paintings, but in earlier years she also created still-lifes, landscapes and portraits. Her work has been featured in numerous exhibitions, including “The Over 70 Show” at the Delaplaine Arts Center in Frederick. She has been honored as a recipient of a grant from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation.
Margaret is survived, beloved, and remembered by her twin sister Mary, of Northern California, by dozens of nieces and nephews and their children, by the many fast friends she made in the arts community, and by all the people to whom her work continues to bring joy.
“To be an artist is to breathe the spirit, seize the chaos and brood new life to light,” Margaret once said in a statement about her philosophy as an artist. “It’s child’s play. It’s harder for adults.”