Mary "Ross" Strudwick was a visual artist living and working in Birmingham, AL. She painted, sculpted and created elaborate altar pieces. She is best known for the altars which were very time consuming sometimes taking many months to accomplish a single piece. Ross died in the fall of 2008 and her memorial service was held at Bare Hands Gallery in Birmingham's Southside.
Memorial Service for Ross Strudwick according to Craig Legg It was a great service today for Ross, held at Bare Hands Gallery, perhaps the greatest collection of old-time Southside bohemians gathered under one roof since the death of Gene Crutcher. A packed house, SRO, at least 200 in attendance, probably ... more, out the door. No preacher, thank God, hah! Johnny Coley led off the testimonials, telling a story of how he first met Ross, when she was living in a house with Karl Schaeffer (I think you know him). Funny story. Next, daughter Sonia spoke, giving heartfelt testimonial of growing up with Mom, visiting Museum of Modern Art in NYC, seeing young Baryshnikov, the dancer. Her sister spoke, saying how she "couldn't have been more different from Ross." Jonah Schaeffer told funny story of how his brother Karl was always "kicking me out of house where he lived with Ross, while Ross was always inviting me back in." Others spoke including Tommy Carr, 15th Avenue neighbor. I wanted to speak but didn't, as I didn't really know her that well. I found myself wishing I had printed out what you had sent me, as that would have been a fabulous testimonial. A lost moment indeed. But, like say, it was a fabulous send-off. Jimmy seemed in good enough spirits, running on adrenalin I'm sure. The hurt will come soon enough. Wish you could have been there, but I'm sure you were there in spirit.