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Mary Sundstrom

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Brookings, South Dakota

Birth year

Lives in
Albuquerque, NM

Works in
Albuquerque, NM



My artwork is informed by a life long investigation of the natural world. I am drawn to the details: the pattern of a fish's scales, the crazy weave of a bird's nest, or the exquisite curl of a fern frond. Fish, birds, and patterns derived from plant forms are combined and reconfigured in their content and form.

Each process; cut paper, printmaking and illustration generates it's own aesthetic. My cutpaper designs are cut from colored and hand-printed papers using a kraft knife and applied in layers, correlating crisp edges with shallow relief.

My prints combine the graphic silhouette effect of relief printing with monotype applications of color of loose brushwork. With the gravure process I draw with pencil and pen on mylar, process it on to a plate and ink it up to give a crayon-like, tonal image.

As an artist working in the arena of natural history illustration, my intent is to render my subjects in their most literal form. Book illustration offers a broader interpretation allowing a range of mediums to express the idea. Examples pictured include pen and wash, water colors, gouache, scratchboard, colored pencil and cut paper.

I feel extraordinarily fortunate to be making a living as an artist and that I have an audience for my work.


Date of Birth:

1950, Brookings, South Dakota


1971 - Bachelor of Fine Arts / University of New Mexico
1973-74 - Minneapolis College of Art & Design - Minneapolis, Minnesota
1995-97 - Graduate Studies - Museum Practices / University of New Mexico

Selected Exhibitions: Solo & Two Person Shows:

2011 - "Untamed Gardens: Monotypes and Paper Cuts"/ New Grounds Gallery / Albuquerque, New Mexico
2008 - "Silhouettes - Mixed Media Prints" / New Grounds Gallery / Albuquerque, New Mexico
2005-2006 - "Cut Paper Artwork" / Aardvark Audiobooks / Albuquerque, New Mexico
1987 - "Mary Sundstrom + Burrel Brenneman" / Del Fine Arts / Taos, New Mexico
1987 - "Mary Sundstrom + Tina Boradiansky" / St. John's College / Santa Fe, New Mexico

Selected Exhibitions: Group Shows

2009 - "Beauty, Decorating and Ornament" / ENMU / Roswell, New Mexico
2008 - "Art Expressions in Technology & Science" / Fuller Lodge / Los Alamos, New Mexico
2006 - "Contemporary Paper Cutouts" / Kimo Gallery / Albuquerque, New Mexico
2006 - "Dia de los Muertos" / Broadway Curtural Center / Albuquerque, New Mexico
2000 - "Book Illustrators Guild" / San Juan College / Farmington, New Mexico
1991 - "Presswork: Art of Women Printmakers: / Lang Communication / Traveling Exhibit
1987 - Co-curated; "Drawing, Six Approaches" / Jonson Gallery / University of New Mexico
1985-1987 - "Celebration of Women in the Arts" / Santa Fe, New Mexico
1985 - "10 Years of Contemporary Printmaking" / Stables Art Center / Taos, New Mexico

Awards and Grants

2006 – Rachel Allen Printer Fellowship/ New Grounds Print Workshop/ Albuquerque, New Mexico
2004-2006 – “Arts, Books, and Communities : National Museum of Women in the Arts”/ Albuquerque Public Schools / Albuquerque, New Mexico
1971-1972 – Tamarind Printer Fellowship / Tamarind Lithography Institute / Albuquerque, New Mexico


Museum of Fine Arts / Santa Fe, New Mexico
Amoco / Denver, Colorado
Amoco / Huston, Texas

Other Related Interests : Published Illustrations

University of New Mexico Press, Albuquerque, New Mexico
“Hanging With Bats,”
“The Little Cow in Valle Grande”
“Trickster in the Front Yard;” Cover art
“The Song of Jonah”
“Big Dreams and Dark Secrets in Chimayo”
“Curse of the Chupa Cabra”
“Chupa Cabra and the Roswell UFO"
“The Senator and the Sin Eater”

Museum of Natural History and Science / Albuquerque, New Mexico
“Triassic, Dawn of the Dinosaurs,” Museum Docent Guide
“Age of Super Giants: Teachers’ Guide”
"The Age of Dinosaurs in New Mexico"

National Audubon Society / New York, NY
“Audubon Guide and Natural Wildlife refuges,” Series: New England, Southwest, Southeast, Northern Midwest, South Central, Rocky Mountains, Mid Atlantic, Alaska, Pacific Northwest, California, and Hawaii

Juniper Learning, Inc. / Espanola, NM
"The Pueblo Potter"
"The Southwest Weaver"
"The Southwest Storyteller"
"The Tinsmith’s Workshop"
"The Rush for Gold Treasure Box"
"New Merino’s First European Pioneers / The Expedition of Don Juan de Onate, 1598"

Highlights for Children / Honesdale, Pennsylvania
Highlights Plus, Science Supplements / Honesdale, Pennsylvania

John Muir Publications / Santa Fe, NM
“Extremely Weird Animals” series: Animal Defenses, Animal Disguises, Animal Hunters, Bats Birds, Endangered Species, Fishes, Frogs, Insects, Mammals, Micromonsters, Primates, Reptiles, Sea Creatures Snakes, and Spiders

Brookings, South Dakota
Recent Exhibits

Mary Sundstrom participated in these exhibits:

Jan, 2016 New Works and New Year’s Celebration
New Grounds Print Workshop and Gallery
Nov, 2014 Hot off the Press - Open Studio, Fundraiser and Printing Extravaganza
New Grounds Print Workshop and Gallery
Sep, 2014 Collections- Etchings, Monotype and Gravure by Mary Sundstrom, Local Treasure
New Grounds Print Workshop and Gallery
Jul, 2014 Exposed – Contemporary Gravure
New Grounds Print Workshop and Gallery
Center for Contemporary Art
Jul, 2013 Organic by Design
New Grounds Print Workshop and Gallery
Click here to see all exhibits for Mary Sundstrom
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