Before social distancing became the new normal, teacher Kathleen Lack and her students met weekly for her Portrait and Figure class. They shared ideas, inspiration, critiques and food. Out of this camaraderie an idea was born, inspired by the ensemble portraits of the 19th century. Eager to explore the artistic challenge of creating composite portraits that would include multiple individuals, the artists worked together to paint a 5 x 9’ circus-themed mural. Featured in the MarinMOCA exhibit “Art Imitating Life,” the mural is an engaging flight of fantasy, depicting a festive and social gathering. The composition includes 25 studio models, the artists themselves, a museum benefactor, a museum administrator, children, a lion, two cats and a fish. Exhibited alongside the mural are portrait works by each of the four artists: Harriet Burge, Maryellen Guroy, Ronnie Kaiser and Kathleen Lack. The artwork is installed through July 19 and is open to the public.