Chuduk, Mary
In her richly layered sculptural narratives, Mary Chuduk explores such compelling issues as gender, ethnicity, religion, and the ways in which cultural bias shapes identity and our perception of one another.  Like several of her contemporaries, Chuduk uses enamel as just one tool in a multifaceted technical arsenal to achieve beautiful and powerfully thought-provoking work.

Born in Chicago, Mary Chuduk received her BFA from Illinois State University in Normal.  She was subsequently awarded an MFA at Northern Illinois University where she studied metals with Lee Peck.  She continued her studies at the University of Grenoble and pursued post-graduate work in metals at Arizona State University where she studied with David Pimental.

Chuduk’s work tends to defy categorization as she continuously experiments with a variety of materials and forms.  Over the years, she has mined traditional techniques such as camaïeu to create compelling narratives in enamel.  In other work, she manipulates copper to fashion unusual shapes on which she draws her images and then enamels them.  At one point in her career, she studied the art of Chinese brush making with Jensheng Li, a master of traditional Yixing technique.  She then adapted this technique, using hair from her children, her pets, and variety of other sources, in sculptural constructions that combine diverse materials with enamel to create an emotionally charged and personal body of work.   In 2003 she began to use copper mesh, hand forming it into bowls, containers and teapots that she then enameled.  The forms she created were influenced by the various cultures she had explored during her international travels.  As she stated, “I am following the thread of rich similarities within seemingly disparate human experiences from Eastern Europe and the mid-East, regardless of the strife and warring that plague these areas.”

Chuduk has been included in exhibitions in the United States, Korea, Switzerland, Japan, India, Russia, Spain, and Canada.  Her work is in numerous collections in this country including the Wichita Center for the Arts and the Mesa Arts Center in Mesa, Arizona.  A highly regarded educator, she published in 2008 Enamel Technique and Experiments. Mary Chuduk has also taught enameling workshops throughout the United States and in Canada, Australia, Japan, Turkey, and the Republic of Georgia.