COMING HOME: Mary Holman Johnson returns for TroyFest

Published 12:58 am Tuesday, April 23, 2019

When TroyFest 2019 opens at 9 a.m. Saturday on the square in downtown Troy, nearly 100 artists will be featured in what has been deemed the premier fine arts and crafts festival for the Central Alabama Region.

The artists will come from the local area as well as from the region. And, for one artist, TroyFest 2019 will be a homecoming of sorts.

Mary Holman Johnson, of MHJ Studio, Serenee, Georgia, will be among the featured artists with her original “statement jewelry.”

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She is the daughter of former Troy residents Holman and Ethel Johnson. He was the city’s photographer and preserved much of the city’s history for future generations. Troy’s Johnson Center for the Arts is named in the couple’s memory.

Mary Holman Johnson’s jewelry does make a statement, said Wiley White, JCA exhibition coordinator. “Mary Holman’s jewelry has been featured at the Johnson Center and, to say everyone ‘had a fit’ over it would be an understatement.”
White said MHJ jewelry is unique in design and in materials. She is extremely talented and her jewelry is like none other. I think everyone who loves jewelry will love MHJ jewelry.”

Morgan Drinkard, TroyFest 2019 co-chair, said Johnson will showcase many of her new creations including her Wedding and Spring Jewelry, mica rocks jewelry and crystal pieces with healing powers.

“Mary Holman has one-of-a-kind pieces of amazing jewelry as well as her custom-fitted bracelet collection. We are extremely proud to have her come home to TroyFest,” Drinkard said.

Johnson said she is looking forward to participating in an event in a community that celebrates and encourages creative development in all its forms, especially since that community is her hometown.

“I am looking forward to seeing and being inspired by the work of other artists and increasing the exposure of my work to a whole new audience,” Johnsons said. “I am also looking forward to the 10,000 visitors that may go away with a treasure, a personal style statement piece or inspiration for a future purchase of an original work. And, I am especially looking forward to the opportunity to visit with old friends.”

For Johnson, the opportunity to return to her hometown and reunite with old friends and meet new ones is a unique experience, as it is with any artists who “come home.”

“Coming home to Troy is a joy,” Johnson said. “My creative roots are from Troy. Sarah Johnson, my art teacher at Charles Henderson High School, would be so pleased her guidance paid off. The encouragement and support given to students in my class that showed potential in the arts was amazing.”

The summer arts and crafts classes in the pavilion at Murphree Park were also early places for learning skills and experimenting with all sorts of materials, Johnson said.

“I also feel thankful that I now live closer to Troy and can participate in events like TroyFest that draw attention to the assets and quality of life in this community,” she said.

Festival hours are 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is free.