Born in Los Angeles when smog was at an all time high, Hollywood was still glamorous, and every woman's ambition was to own a mink coat. Inherited good art genes from my mother and never wanted to do anything else. Attended Cal State University at Long Beach and majored in Printmaking, but I really learned NOTHING and consider the work I do today as Self Taught.

In 1984, after reading an article in the LA Weekly by Matt Groening about "the new comics", I started drawing and writing my own comic stories. I'd always harbored a secret desire to be a cartoonist, and was greatly influenced by Robert Crumb and MAD MAGAZINE, so I started self-publishing my own "mini comics". First solo comic was HOODOO (1988), a tribute to the Harlem Renaissance writer, Zora Neale Hurston. Her folk tales gave me the idea to illustrate my own "party stories", and the best of these were collected in the book, LIFE OF THE PARTY (1994). This book has been translated into German and the Spanish edition will be out this year.

In Illustration work has been in THE SD READER, OC WEEKLY, VILLAGE VOICE, SPIN, GUITAR PLAYER, MUSICIAN, ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, and projects like THE GUITAR COOKBOOK, WEIRD TALES OF THE RAMONES CD box set, STARTIME - the James Brown CD box set, Carlsbad Museum of Making Music - "Hands on the Future" exhibit, and CD covers for The Insect Surfers and Buddy Blue.

My paintings have been exhibited at La Luz de Jesus Gallery, Track 16, David Zapt Gallery, Laguna Beach Art Museum Annex, LACE (Los Angeles), COCA (Seattle), Southwestern College, Patricia Correia Gallery, Sushi Gallery and Ducky Waddle's Emporium.

I also enjoy making hand built ceramics and wheel thrown functional pieces that I glaze and fire in my own kiln. I also enjoy painting on velvet, that which we all consider the King of Kitsch, but which also makes my color and "cubismo" style of drawing even more dramatic and mysterious on the plush background of black velvet.

My home is in Encinitas, which I share with my husband, a dog, a cat, and lots of stringed instruments. We have a band called THE WIGBILLIES.



All content © Copyright 2004 Mary Fleener.     
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