Mary Zeran grew up in a family of women artists. Textiles, embroidery, and woodcarving, were their visual language. Abstracted shapes and forms were their words.  Each time Zeran picks up a brush or scissors, she immerses herself in the language of her family. As she abstracts flowers, trees, and all the colors of nature, she speaks her mother tongue. This language brings her closer to her family’s traditions, histories, and stories. 

My paintings are a group that has evolved over time. Technically, more collage than paintings. I paint on polyester film, cut out shapes, and then arrange them on a painted surface. This allows me to be spontaneous and collaborative with the random things that happen in the process of gluing and cutting.
— Mary Zeran

Zeran’s work has been in public and private collections as well as many corporate collections, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, The University of Iowa in Iowa City, and the SOIL Gallery in Seattle.

Ms. Zeran is the recipient of numerous awards and honors. She received an Oregon College of Arts and Crafts Residency, and a 2% for the Arts Purchase Prize from the Visual Arts Commission in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Mary Zeran was born in Iowa City, Iowa in 1964. She received her B.F.A. and M.F.A. from University of Iowa. She lives and works in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.