Sculptures Along The North Shore I

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Figures + Forms: Margot McMahon/Sculptures Along The North Shore I
Margot McMahon
Written By Margot McMahon

Margot McMahon's sculptures tell a story of how living beings are all connected through nature.

The Offering

Founded in 1859, Saint Patrick’s Church, the first church in Lake Forest, grew its congregation and a larger new church was built. While learning a Celtic way of being Catholic, Margot sculpted earth, wood, glass and stone into a twice life-size Holy Family, Celtic Cross, Baptismal Font and Ambry for sacramental oils. She started with the Offering, six-foot high hands holding an oak and rosewood tabernacle for the Host in their palms. Finally, she painted the mural in the family room to remind us from St.Patrick’s Prayer that God is above us, below us, beside us and within us.


Carved from a 300-year-old maple tree that was blown over in hurricane force winds off Lake Michigan, these large stones of wood rest in relation to each other. While Margot’s 90-year-old father was reaching the end of his life, she recalls his story about being a stone on the beach in her carving, “The waves wash in and the waves wash out and I am still there - on the beach.” She carved the maple stones as elements only to realize at installation, nine stones were carved. She is from a family of nine, so this sculpture revealed itself as a family portrait.

Mother And Child

Commissioned for the celebration of St. Mary’s Parish 75th Anniversary, this sculpture is inspired by the Mayan Chacmool sculptures, in which a strong female presence honors a child with support during a learning moment. The mother or teacher raises the child to an equal level for an exchange in learning. The conversation is restated with open circular arms and lap, making a place for another child to climb or rest.

Hawk And Dove

The warrior Hawk rests besides the Dove of Peace. The two classic bird forms offer contrasting symbols, skills and abilities. The Hawk rises to the heavens to bring words from above as it dives to earth. The cooing, nesting Dove snuggles its head under its wing in serenity. By capturing these dichotomous birds in granite they are raised to monumental status. The vertical Hawk contrasts with the horizontal Dove though they are both resting birds of a feather.

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Figures + Forms: Margot McMahon

Sculptures Along The North Shore I

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