DeMaris Gaunt

DeMaris Gaunt
Mud Horse Art
Stained glass, mosaics, wood burning, & jewelry
October hours: Wed–Sun 10–5; closed Mon–Tue
Year round by appointment

1515 Tanglewood Lane, Nashville

DeMaris Gaunt learned stained glass skills because she was in the right place at the right time.

“I had a boyfriend whose parents owned and operated Greenwood Stained Glass,” she says.  “I ended up being their apprentice for about a year.  I often marvel at how lucky I was, and I’ve been working with stained glass ever since!”

Though stained glass is her first love, DeMaris is an eclectic artist.  She works with wood as a canvas for her abstract drawings and designs, plus she makes a variety of jewelry using glass, wood, or even recycled plastic milk jugs. 

“I love leather, too,” she says.  “I’ve made hats, purses and pouches from recycled leather.”

She’s also a poet and has written a novel, Two Doors.

Visitors to DeMaris’ studio will notice something that unites all of her work: precision.  For her, craftsmanship is very important.

“My mother’s perfectionist gene was generously handed down, and whatever I create and sell is going to be done correctly, and done well,” she says. “Sloppy is not in my vocabulary!”

This includes her stunning three-dimensional stained glass sculptures, her newest work.

This is the first year that DeMaris will open her studio, Mud Horse Art, during the Back Roads of Brown County Studio Tour.  It is located in her home, which she designed and built herself in 2018 to be an outlet for her art.  A quarter of the house is studio space.

“I grew up in Greenwood,” she explains, “but spent many weekends as a child in Brown County. It’s been a lifelong dream to call Brown County my home.  The magic of the town, with the shops full of arts and crafts has always felt like home to me.” 

With Brown County as her new home, DeMaris is free to live her life creatively, incorporating the natural world and her artwork into her life seamlessly.

“My preferred way to live my life is moment to moment,” she explains, “which means that I am always open to and ready for an adventure! If it’s a beautiful day, I’m outside hiking or kayaking if I’m not at my ‘real job’ as HR coordinator at the Abe Martin Lodge.”

This is just how she operates, how her creativity finds its natural outlet.

“If I sit down to create and nothing is flowing,” she says, “I don’t force creation.  When something in me needs to be expressed, it will demand my full attention, and it will get it!”

Where does she find inspiration?

“Everywhere!” she says. “It’s fun to feel inspired by something…and very satisfying to turn that inspiration into something totally unique and my own.”