Online Courses & Zoom Classes

“Mary does not ‘teach’ as such;  she introduces a painting (or an artist, or an idea) and then enters a process of mutual discovery as a co-explorer, always stimulating an attitude of ‘gazing’ and encouraging a heart response.   She fosters the development of  individuals having an openness of vision to perceive what is going on in themselves as well as what the basic intention of the artist might be. Mary’s classes are inspirational.   They have a spiritual dimension in the broadest sense, and encourage the participator to find their ‘inner eye’ to perceive not so much facts and figures about artists and art history, but how art can change us.   At the same time, Mary is very kind and attentive to all her students, and respects everyone’s contribution.   Her classes are wholly accessible both to folk who have in-depth experience of ‘art appreciation’ and those who have little.”

Veronica Bennetts

The Art of Seeing – £10

Starting Thursday 10th September 7-8pm by Zoom

“If the doors of perception were cleansed,
everything would appear to man as it is,
William Blake

This new online session, The Art of Seeing, will run every month on a drop-in basis. You do not have to commit to any number of sessions.
We know how to read a book and get lost in the other world of the imagination, and we allow ourselves to be moved emotionally and viscerally by music, but have we lost our visionary capacity when it comes to looking at works of art?
Just one work of art will be the focus of our attention and discussion each month. By slowing down and taking time with each work of art, we are able to relax and un-wind, observe detail, character, emotion, gesture, atmosphere, nuances and subtleties presented through the image that are simply not possible from rushed or fleeting glances. When we spend longer than a few minutes looking, we are also able to engage more embodied responses which include imagination, visualisation, contemplation, meditation and reflection, all modalities of knowing and seeing that are just not attainable from a rational mode of looking. Space will be created for you to share what you see, perceive and feel as well as learning a little about the context of each work of art.
This class will be £10 per person. Email me directly to book at or click the button below.


How to Look at Art – Five Week Course,

via Esher, Surrey Adult Learning, starting Monday 21st Sept- 19th Oct, 10am- 1pm – ZOOM class

This five week course is an extension of the one off classes I have taught on the same topic before. With our museums and galleries full of wonderful works of art, the average visitor still spends only an average of fifteen seconds in front of a work of art. How do we look at art for longer, how do we find a way in and what do we look for? Through this five week course, we will explore works of art from the Western tradition, from ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome, Medieval and Renaissance art, up to modern day, with a questioning around, ‘can how we look at art not only change what we see, and the how art looks – but also change us?’

Spaces for this course are limited, so I would recommend booking soon if you are interested. Booking can only be made through Surrey – see link here and all classes are via ZOOM. But if you miss these, there are other options below:

The same course, How to Look at Art, will also be repeated in Amersham, Buckinghamshire, where sessions will take place in the actual centre. Dates for this are 5 weeks from Thursday 24th September, 12.30- 2.30pm. Since the sessions are shorter in length, some aspects of the course will be adjusted to accommodate this. See here for more info and to book. Again, spaces will be limited.

Buckinghamshire will also be running How To Look at Art as an online course from Saturday 26th September for five weeks, 9.30- 11am. See here for more info and to book.

Caravaggio- Master of Light and Dark – Mary Attwood

via Surrey Adult Learning, Friday 9th October, 10am- 1pm – ZOOM class

This session will focus in detail on some of Caravaggio’s most famous works of art as well as those lesser known. These works are full of drama, movement and emotion, often concealing deeper meaning, and ask the viewer to be an engaged participant in the images he presents before us. We will discover his innovations, his inspirations and his life story which has made him one of the most famous artists in the world. To find out more and to book, see here.

This five week course will be a visual feast of great works of art but when it comes to looking at art, there is so much more than meets the eye. These sessions will introduce you to a few known ‘masterpieces’ and reveal some little known facts about them. From the efforts Leonardo Da Vinci employed to entertain his famous sitter, the mysterious figures in Van Gogh’s Parisian terrace to the skull at the base of Hans Holbein’s painting, you will discover aspects of works of art you may never have even considered. Spaces are limited. To find out more and to book, see here.


Leonardo Da Vinci – His Life and Work 

Two week course via Surrey Adult Learning, Wednesday 4th November and Wednesday 11th November, 7- 9pm – ZOOM classes

Often heralded as the archetypal Renaissance man, Leonardo Da Vinci was truly one of the great polymaths of his time and arguably unrivalled since. Scientist, mathematician, inventor, painter, sculptor and writer, Leonardo had an insatiable yearning to discover what might lie behind the world of natural phenomena. Leonardo wrote, ‘all our knowledge has its origins in our perceptions” which is commonly misunderstood today as just referring to that which we can see. But during Renaissance Italy, when Leonardo lived and worked, the eye was considered the window to the soul.  This class will take a voyage through his life and beautiful works of art, from finished masterpieces, unfinished works, drawings and explorations of the human anatomy, which provide some insight into this fascinating figure from history. Spaces are limited for this. To find out more and to book, see here.


Reclaiming Beauty – Sculpture: from Myron to Michelangelo 

via Surrey Adult Education,  Friday 20th November, 10am – 1pm – ZOOM class

To echo the words, ‘reclaiming beauty’ from Sir Roger Scruton, this course will focus on European Sculpture from Myron to Michelangelo, Rodin to Giacometti with an emphasis on the changing face and meaning of beauty.
From the ancient Greek sculptor Myron to Renaissance genius Michelangelo, from the revival of classical art through French sculptor Rodin, to the elongated figures created by Giacometti, sculpture has changed through millennia. This session will look in- depth at great sculpture with a specific focus on the sculptor’s intention of encapsulating beauty, what beauty meant to them, and how the meaning of beauty has changed over time. Spaces are limited. To find out more and to book, see here.