By Jeffrey G. Mulcock, ’03
For Lynde Madsen Mott, ’97 (Randy L., ’98), the reconstruction of the Nauvoo Temple coincided ideally with her artistic objectives, and she spent the last two years creating the Nauvoo Women Series—six paintings focusing on the experience of women during the Nauvoo era.
Mott graduated from BYU in illustration and quickly became interested in the Nauvoo period of the history of the Church of Jesus Christ. “It’s a tremendously unique and heroic instance of not only Church history but American history,” she says.
To create art that is both aesthetic and instructive, Mott heavily researches the architecture, furnishings, vegetation, and clothing of the time. She spent nearly two years sewing original costumes for her models.
A frequent image found in her paintings is a mother or group of women pausing to appreciate the actions of children. “There are so many instances of great trials during the Nauvoo period,” Mott explains. “I conscientiously chose not to focus on that but on moments of optimism and gratitude.”
The Ensign used two of Mott’s paintings, in the July and September 2002 issues.