2-D Mixed Media

by Mary Zeran
April 1-May 25, 2014
Center for Faith and Life

Mary Zeran

Mary Zeran is a third generation American artist who makes abstract collages bursting with joyous color, luscious surfaces, and layered abstract forms.

Undulating brushstrokes capture her emotional connection to the land.  Her work has been exhibited and collected nationally and internationally. She holds a MA and MFA in metalworking, drawing, and sculpture from University of Iowa, where she studied with Chunghi Choo.  Her awards include a 2% for the Arts Award from the Cedar Rapids Visual Arts Commission, a studio residency at Oregon College of Art in Portland, Oregon, and numerous corporate and private collections, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, and The University of Iowa.  She maintains a home and studio in the rolling hills of Central Iowa.

For more information on Mary Zeran and her work, please visit her personal website

Artist's Statement

"My paintings are a group that evolves over time.  I paint on acetate, cut out shapes, and arrange them on a painted surface.  This is a spontaneous and collaborative process that gives me the chance to be responsive to the cutting and gluing. 

Everyday, I seal the current piece in a layer of glaze.  I fix the image in time, one layer after another.  My process repeats itself.  It is cumulative. 

My life like my artwork is a story of always coming back, spurts of moving out and then returning to the source, a circular migration pattern.  Each time I return to Iowa, I am reminded of the fertility of the land.  Although, I have lived in many cities, Iowa is the land of my heart.  It is a soothing landscape of undulating hills, large puffed clouds, fields of one color, and the Mississippi River.  Stepping back and take the long view, the aesthetic is minimal, but up close it is an active abstract filled with millions of living organisms and small worlds surviving together within the larger whole. 

My work captures all of these varied worlds into joyful color, and luscious surfaces assembled into abstract collage.  This is my way of interpreting the land, tapping into those internal rhythms and ways of being that are natural and spontaneous."

-Mary Zeran

2013-2014 Mary Zeran