Manon Cleary (November 14, 1942 – November 26, 2011) was an American performer active in Washington, D.C. who specialized in photo-realistic paintings and drawings. She often created works that studied the human form and light, and many of her works were inspired by actions in her life.
Cleary studied and normal her bachelor's at Washington University, in her hometown of St. Louis, Missouri. She then went to Temple University, where she established her master's degree from the Tyler School of Art. Shortly after, Cleary moved to Washington D.C in 1970 where she would play-act at the University of the District of Columbia as a professor for thirty years. Cleary furthermore used her role as professor to retain local artists.
Cleary's style of art is intensely realistic (it is said that she would often win awards for her exploit in the photography category by mistake) and unique. To create many of her images, she worked in a reductive fashion by using graphite powder, tissues, and erasers. This style allowed her to create works that were softer and more personal, but yet realistic.
Cleary died in 2011 at the age of 69. She suffered for many years from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. She was survived by her husband, F. Steven Kijek and her twin sister, Shirley Cleary-Cooper. Her affect is held by many museums anything over the country, including the Art Institute of Chicago, the National Museum of Women in the Arts, and the Brooklyn Museum. She has held numerous solo exhibitions and been a share of many exhibitions worldwide.