Courtesy CBC / image credit : Jenina MacGillivray

Mary MacDonald, a pioneer in the St. John’s arts community, has died at the age of 32.

Her loss leaves the St. John’s and Atlantic Canadian arts communities shocked and deeply saddened. Her work leaves them strengthened, inspired, and grateful.

“She was a difference-maker,” said artist Joe Fowler, who worked with MacDonald at the Eastern Edge Gallery.

A curator, artist, writer and organizer, she ran Eastern Edge from 2012 to 2015. She is often credited for putting the gallery on the Canadian arts radar as a hotbed for up-and-coming talent.

MacDonald was one of the founders of Girls Rock NL, a summer camp for young women who want to play music or be in a band. (Jenina MacGillivray)

MacDonald also helped found Girls Rock NL, a non-profit offering free summer camps to young women who want to form bands and play music.

In 2014, she was selected as one of ARTINFO Canada’s 30 most promising art world influencers under 30 years of age.

MacDonald was diagnosed with cancer in 2016. She passed away in St. John’s on July 18, 2017, with her family and close friends around her.

Plans are underway to start a foundation in her honour.

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