Mary Lohan was born in Dublin in 1954 and studied painting at the National College of Art and Design, Dublin before returning to the college as a member of NCAD's Board from 1996 to 1999. She lives and works in her Dublin.
Mary Lohan often works with incredibly thick impasto that oozes over the edges of her paintings, encrusting itself in layer upon layer of oil that clings to the sides of the canvas and extends the picture plane out from the edges of the canvas. Because of this, much of her work appears to hover in front of rather than hang on the wall. Her rough, tactile use of paint is echoed in her fascination with the barren coastlines Donegal, Mayo and Wexford, and the physicality of her painting allows the viewer to experience the rolling and crashing of the waves against the shore in the waves of paint that build up on the surface of her paintings.
Mary Lohan was awarded the Taylor De Vere Award at the 1991 RHA Annual Exhibition and first prize at the Claremorris Open Exhibition in 1992. She was elected to Aosdána in 2001. Her work is frequently included in major exhibitions focusing on the Irish landscape in art, and she has exhibited her paintings in solo and group shows nationwide. Her work is represented in the collections of the Department of the Taoiseach, AIB, the OPW / State Art Collection, A&L Goodbody, Bank of Ireland and in various private collections in Ireland, Europe, Japan and America.