In the Emmanuel Fremmin Gallery on 27th Street in Chelsea, you'll find yourself mesmerized by the incredible art on display. The rapidly expanding gallery focuses on representing emerging artists whose progressive and unique outlook illustrates the fusion of contemporary life and personal experience. The work tends to focus on serene, spiritual, and provocative works of beauty. This might also be a great way to describe the statuesque and exotic Mary Nguyen whose stunning looks are matched only by her wit, charm, and kindness. As a business woman, humanitarian, NY art world figure, and co-owner of the gallery, Mary is someone who epitomizes the Ivory Row Woman. 

We recently met up with her at the gallery for a long chat about life, art, travel, kids and applying to 6th-grade middle schools in NYC. 

What is your favorite virtue?
Without a doubt, I would have to say humility. I find myself very drawn to people with this virtue and it's something I consciously strive for within myself. The act of introspection and true consideration of others is becoming increasingly rare in this day and age. As a society, we need to be thinking of ourselves less and be more aware of our surroundings.

What are your favorite qualities in a man?
Loyalty and Restraint.  Any man can be a man, but very few are real gentlemen. This is something I try to teach my boys every single day.

What are your favorite qualities in a woman? 
Self-deprecating humor and honesty. I want girlfriends who can laugh uproariously with me and can call me on anything with total candor.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?
A wintery Sunday at home while my children are playing together and the house is radiating a warmth from all the cooking, laughter and noises that only a family can make and enjoy.  That is my heaven. 

What is your greatest fear?
Losing my children. Without them, none in this world would matter to me.

Which living person do you most admire?
My mother, who as a single mother of 6 children, managed to escape a country ravaged by war to bring her children to a new country and give all of us a life with endless oppurtunities.  I don't know if I could ever be as strong as she was. She's a truly inspiring woman.

What is your most treasured possession?
My first edition "Alice in Wonderland" with original illustrations and mint condition leather-bound case; it is exquisite.

Who are your heroes in real life?
All the single moms in the world who work, take care of their children, manage households, and take care of everything in their world. It is an incredibly difficult and thankless job but without these woman, the world would be a very different place.  So, THANK YOU ladies and keep up the good work!

What is your greatest regret?
Not having more children. I really do love kids, and as much as I may joke about the evils of parenting, it really is the best thing on earth. Nothing in life gives me as much joy as being with my children.

What natural talent do you wish you had? 
I wish I could sing, so I don't have to frighten my family and neighbors with my Mariah Carey shower performances.

What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?
I would buy a maze sculpture from Richard Serra, so I can chase my children all day long and scare them silly!

What is your favorite motto or quote?
To err is human, to forgive is divine - Alexandre Pope

What's your favorite way to wear cashmere?
With an old pair of jeans and some sexy bed head.

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Mary is wearing Slouchy Ribbed Crew