Blog: Library Author Night to Showcase Rare Leo Politi Artwork

The Mary Ames Mitchell Author Night will also showcase an unknown side of Leo Politi's art career. Politi was near and dear to South Pasadena.

A very special Author Night with Mary Ames Mitchell will be presented in the
South Pasadena Public Library Community Room on Thursday, February 28 at 7 p.m. The program, one of South Pasadena’s 125th Anniversary Celebration
events, is presented by the Library and the Friends of the South Pasadena
Public Library. The free, public program will also feature an exhibit of
original Leo Politi artworks belonging to Mary, the Library, and local
storeowners Ellen Daigle of Ellen’s Silkscreening and Scott Gandell of South
Pasadena Mercantile. Leo Politi (1906-1998) an iconic LA artist and children’s
book author and illustrator, created the wonderful mural in the Library
Children’s Room in 1957 (for $200!) and reinvented it for the Library’s
expansion project in 1982 (without asking for a fee). Today’s, it’s the oldest
remaining of all Leo Politi’s public murals.

Mary Ames Mitchell was born and raised in Pasadena, California.  She obtained a
BA in Art History at Wheaton College in Massachusetts, a teaching credential
from USC’s Graduate School of Education, and attended Pasadena’s Art Center
College of Design to earn her BFA in Graphics and Packaging. While raising two
children, Mary worked as a graphic artist designing materials for Fortune 500
companies. She became an author upon the publication of her first personal
historical narrative “The Man in the Purple Cow House” in 2005. Her second
book, “The Search for My Abandoned Grandmother, A History of Family Blessings,” released  in 2012, relates the detective story of Mary’s journey through Great Britain looking for her maternal grandmother’s grave and other long held family secrets.

Mary will be reading from “The Search for My Abandoned Grandmother,” her book abouther grandfather Prynce who started the quarterly magazine “Freedom and Unity” in 1940. Leo Politi painted illustrations for the magazine until its demise in
1946. Mary inherited her grandfather’s Politi artworks and will be displaying
them for the program.

The Library Community Room is located at 1115 El Centro Street. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and no tickets or reservations are necessary. Refreshments will be
served. Special thanks to Paul Politi, Ellen Daigle, Ellen’s Silkscreening, South Pasadena Mercantile, and Scott Gandell.


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