In 1995, a year after three of Mary Proctor's family members perished in a trailer fire trying to find a way out, she received a Spiritual Message. She was told to paint a door. She followed directions, leaned it up against her chain link fence and sold it to a passing collector. More doors were commissioned and a show in New York convinced Proctor that this was her calling.
Her works, which have been featured in the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore, include written messages and applications of beads, buttons and other trinkets, reminiscent of memory jugs.
Proctor was featured on the cover of Raw Vision, the international magazine of contemporary folk art.
Mary Proctor's work is included in museums and collections across the country. In 2005, she was included in the "On Their Own - Selected Self-taught Artists" at the Smithsonian Anacostia Museum.