Fine Art Focus: Wendy Maruyama

by Grace Bonney

One of my favorite parts of writing In the Company of Women was getting to research and discover so many incredible women that I hadn’t yet heard of. So one of my first questions to women I knew I wanted to feature was: Who are the women that inspire you most? Artist Tanya Aguiñiga (who is also in the book!) suggested I look into one of her teachers/mentors, Wendy Maruyama. And the second I did, I was hooked.

Wendy is an incredibly talented fine artist based in San Diego, CA. Her installation work focuses on promoting advocacy and awareness for various social and cultural issues. I love the way she works with texture and mixed materials in her work — it adds such a sense of depth, meaning and history to each piece. Read on below to learn more about Wendy and her work. xo, grace

Artist: Wendy Maruyama
About: Wendy is an artist, craftsperson and educator based in San Diego, California.
More: You can read, see and hear more about Wendy and her work here, here, here and here.

Images via Craft Council, Art Nerd, Wilcox Design, Little Rock.

4wm Installation of the artwork of Wendy Murayama at San Diego State University, February 2012. Photo by Kevin J. Miyazaki maruyama

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  • Wendy is a huge inspiration to so many in the craft world! Her most recent exhibition “The wildLIFE Project” explores issues of poaching and endangered species through a series of exquisite works in wood, including six elephant masks that each hang between 8 and 12 feet tall. The show is currently up at the Penland Gallery near Asheville, NC through September 4. It’s well worth a visit!

  • Wow, Wendy’s work is awesome. The sense of history in each piece is so palpable.

    I wish I was planning a visit to Asheville soon to check out the show, Sarah.

    Thanks for the post, Grace.

    – Bart

  • I really enjoy these Fine Art Focus pieces! Often you are introducing me to an artist I probably wouldn’t learn about otherwise. Wendy Maruyama’s thoughtful work is something I will explore further. Her TED talk is fantastic. Hearing about her process for the Tag Project was inspiring. Thank you.