Artist Statement
Mary Little was born in Northern Ireland in an environment full of rolling hills and soft formations. She is an artist with a designer’s sensibility, trained at London’s Royal College of Art in furniture design. Little works with unbleached artist canvas to express a key theme in her work, which is the delicate interplay between intent and serendipity. She lets the cloth lead, and at other times she controls it. What excites her is how the material is a blank canvas that can express her emotions and her memories; expansive green landscapes from her childhood and patterns from the Aran sweaters her mother used to knit.

Little’s work is created so that people can get lost and absorbed in it. The ivory of the cloth allows for the palette of light and shadow to play off of the surface, heightening the important role of the environment  in how each piece is experienced. These constant shifts in form allow for an infinite number of meanings and interpretations to occur in just one viewing, which allows her work to be defined outside of a strict minimalist context.

What her close collaborators of cloth, shadow, and light make visible are patterns that people can relate to, giving a meditative space where they are encouraged to find their own emotions, memories, and stories within the cloth; and they can if they are still enough to be present to their subtle reveal.

In 2018, Little had a solo show at Craft in America Center, Los Angeles. Her work has been shown internationally at Craft Contemporary Museum (formerly CAFAM), Los Angeles, Musée de la civilization, Québec, Canada, and National Museums Northern Ireland, Belfast. Her work is in the permanent collections of the Vitra Design Museum in Basel and Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris. Her commissions and gallery works have been acquired for private collections in Europe and North America, as well as public collections including the Victoria & Albert Museum, London. Little’s work has been reviewed in Artillery and Fabrik magazines, and she has been profiled in Luxe magazine. She is a 2019 recipient of the prestigious Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant and currently lives in Los Angeles.

Born in Northern Ireland, 1958
Lives and Works in Los Angeles

1985 Master of Design, Royal College of Art, London
1981 Bachelor of Arts (Honors), Ulster University, Northern Ireland

Solo Exhibitions
2018 The Shape of Cloth, curated by Emily Zaiden, Craft in America Center, Los Angeles
2017 Intent and Serendipity, Google Campus, Santa Monica, CA 
2003 The Knotted and the Stitched, Tercera Gallery, Palo Alto, CA
1996 Have a Seat: the Köln Project, Galerie Andrea Leenarts, Cologne
1994 Coat of Arms Collection, Galerie Valerie, London

Group Exhibitions
2019 Art Market San Francisco with Timothy Yarger Fine Art, San Francisco
LA Art Show with Timothy Yarger Fine Art, Los Angeles
2018 London Calling, Musée de la Civilization, Québec
Mono | Mano, SCAPE Gallery, Corona Del Mar, CA
2017 San Francisco Fall Art and Antiques Show with Galen Lowe Gallery, San Francisco
Material As Metaphor, curated by Suzanne Isken, Craft Contemporary (formerly the Craft and Folk Art Museum), Los Angeles
Harbinger, Fresh Paint Contemporary Gallery, Los Angeles
Gentle and Cruel, Gallery 310, Los Angeles, CA
2015/16 Crafted: The Fine Art of Furniture, National Museums Northern Ireland, Belfast
2015 California Handmade: State of the Arts, curated by Emily Zaiden of the Craft in America Center, The Maloof Foundation, Alta Loma, CA
Cloth and Clay: New Work by Mary Little and Stephanie Chiacos, Design Matters Gallery, Los Angeles
2013 Reynolds Fine Art Gallery, New Haven, CT
2012 Instructions Not Included, ArtSpace, New Haven, CT
2007 Private Pleasures: Collecting Contemporary Textile Art, Textile Museum, Washington D.C.
2005 Anderson Ranch Art Center, Snowmass Village, CO
2004 Go West!, Richmond Art Center, Richmond, CA  
Yuten: Fusion Project, Gensler Architecture, San Francisco
Form Follows Function, Craft Alliance Gallery, St. Louis, MO 
California Design 2004, Design Center, San Francisco
2003 Bay Area Furniture Art, Blue Room Gallery, San Francisco
2002 Functional Fine Art, Braunstein/Quay Gallery, San Francisco
Pritam and Eames Gallery, East Hampton, NY
2001 East to West, Museum of Craft and Folk Art, San Francisco
Furniture Focus, Contemporary Applied Art, London
2000/03 Home Sweet Home, British Council (traveling exhibition)
1999/00 Jerwood Applied Arts Prize 1999: Furniture, Crafts Council, London (traveling exhibition)
1999 A Grand Design, Victoria and Albert Museum, London
1998 Spirit of the Times, Bowes Museum, County Durham, UK
London: Form and Function, Generous Miracles Gallery, New York
1997/98 Objects of Our Time, curated by Martina Margetts, American Crafts Council, New York
1997 Contemporary Decorative Arts, curated by Janice Blackburn, Sotheby’s, London
1996 Design Im Wandel, curated by Alessandro Mendini, Übersee-Museum, Bremen, Germany
1995 Inaugural, Galerie Marzee, Nijmegen, The Netherlands
Furniture Today, it’s Craft and Design, curated by Peter Dormer, Crafts Council, London
Cross-over-2, Galerie Andrea Leenarts, Cologne
1994 3 Ways, New Directions in Furniture, curated by Amanda Game, The Scottish Gallery, Edinburgh
1990 Wood – Mary Little and Anthony Byrant, WG Gallery, London
1988 The Modern Chair, curated by John Thackara, Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), London
Luci, Memphis Milano, Milan

Awards and Grants
2019 Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant, USA
2007 The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design, US. Good Design Award
Interior Design: Design magazine, US. Best of Year, Merit Award
1999 Jerwood Applied Arts Prize 1999: Furniture, UK. Shortlist
1993 Harold Hyam Wingate Trust Grant, UK
1992 Oppenheim-John Downes Memorial Trust Grant, UK
Crafts Council Grant, UK

2018 Thornton, Jenn. “Mary Little A New Approach to A Humble Material,” DIGS Magazine, December 13
Warren, Daniel Austin. “Mary Little Craft in America,” Artillery Magazine, July 2
Pin-Up Magazine, Issue 24, Spring/ Summer
2017 Ollman, Leah. “Fake Fur, Rubber, Afghans: Craft Museum Unfurls Some Playful Surprises in ‘Material as Metaphor,’” LA Times, August 18
Kay Turner, Nancy. “Material as Metaphor,” Riot Material Blog, July 31 
Kussatz, Simone. “Way with Fabric: Profile of Mary Little,” Fabrik Magazine, June 19
Bickley, Taryn. “L.A. Artist Mary Little Works Magic on Blank Canvas,” Luxe Magazine, March 28 
Stanford, Andrea. “Downtown L.A. Artist Mary Little Sculpts Cloth into Art,” C-Magazine, March
2015 The Maloof Foundation and Craft in America Center, “California Handmade” Exhibition Catalogue, USA
Rus, Mayer. “Mary Little Unveils Series of Minimalist Textile Wall Hangings,” Architectural Digest, July 31 
Bryan, Lori. “A Lot of Country and a Little Blue,” The Robb Report Magazine Vol. 3
2012 Lipiana, Maria. “Made here: Soft Focus,” New England Home Magazine, Fall
2010 “New Sensations,” Modern Magazine Vol. 9
“A Coup for Collectors: Bius are Fabricating the Future,” Curated Object Blog
Suqi, Riman. “Currents: Décor. Designer of an Ottoman,” New York Times, January 20
2008 “Nanook and Co,” Domus Magazine Vol. 5, Italy
2007 Renzi, Jen. “Pool Collection, New and Notable ’07,” I.D. Magazine Vol. 11/12
“Lounging 007: From Items to Spaces,” Monitor Magazine Vol. 46, Russia
“Magnificent Obsession,” American Style Magazine Vol. 54
2002 Wada, Yoshiko Iwamoto. “Memory in Cloth: Shibori Now,” Kodansha International Press, USA 
2000 British Council, “Home Sweet Home” Exhibition Catalogue, UK
Harrod, Tanya. “The Crafts in Britain in the Twentieth Century,” Yale University Press
Maurer, Ingo. “International Design Yearbook 15," Abbeville Press
“Shortform,” Crafts Magazine Vol. 1, UK
1999 Crafts Council, “Jerwood Applied Arts” Exhibition Catalogue, UK
“Variety Pack,” Blueprint Magazine Vol. 9, UK
“Bius View,” IDFX Magazine Vol. 6, UK
1998 Levi, Peta. "New British Design 1998,” Miller/Mitchell-Beazley Press
1997 Crafts Council, “Objects of Our Time” Exhibition Catalogue, Curated by Martina Margetts, UK
Dormer, Peter. “The Culture of Craft,” Manchester University Press
“Chairs: Interview” Woman’s Hour Interview, BBC Radio 4
“Interview, Contemporary Decorative Arts,” Olga Buckley Show Interview, BBC Greater London Radio
1996 Übersee-Museum, “Design Im Wandel” Exhibition Catalogue, curated by Alessandro Mendini, Germany
“Little Goes A Long Way,” Blueprint Magazine Vol. 10, UK
Myerson, Jeremy. “Jeremy Myersons’ Top Ten Chairs of the Decade,” Design Week Magazine Vol. 4, UK
1995 Crafts Council, “Furniture Today, it’s Craft and Design” Exhibition Catalogue, Curated by Peter Dormer, UK
Design Report Magazine, Germany, July/August
“Furniture: Mary Little”, Design Week Magazine, UK, June 2
1994 “Interview, Loving Harold,” Kaleidoscope Feature, BBC Radio 4
Bullivant, Lucy. “Mary Bittet Zur Anprobe,” Ambiente Magazine Vol. 10, Germany
“Little Coat of Arms,” Ntizain Magazine, Summer, Greece
“Squaring the Circle,” Crafts Magazine Vol. 5 (cover article), UK
Farrelly, Liz. “Konstantin Grcic and Mary Little Explore the Angles,” Blueprint Magazine Vol. 5 (cover article), UK
“Taking Stock,” Crafts Magazine Vol. 3 (cover article), UK
“Mary Little Desièges Cousus Main,” Architecture Interieure Cree Magazine Vol. 6, France
“Artful Ambitions from Milan,” Washington Post, May 25
“Mary Little, des sieges cousus main,” Cree Magazine, Italy
“Quite Contrary,” Building Magazine Vol. 3, UK 
1992 “Inquietudes Formales, Los Diseños de Mary Little,” Ardi Magazine Vol. 2, Spain
1990 “Out of the Wood: Deyan Sudjic Looks at Mary Little’s Latest Work,” Blueprint Magazine Vol. 10, UK
1989 “Mary Little, A London Based Designer Gears Seductive Furniture to the Body and Mind,” Interiors Magazine Vol. 9, UK
1988 “…or Shock of the New: Deyan Sudjic on Avant-garde Chairs,” The Sunday Times Magazine, London, August 7 
McQuiston, Liz. “Women in Design,” Rizzoli International Publications 
1987 Mendini, Alessandro. “International Design Yearbook 11,” Abbeville Press 
“Piccoli Progetti: Fra Tradizione e Avanguardia”, Modo Magazine Vol. 87, Italy
1986 Ambasz, Emilio. “International Design Yearbook 2,” Abbeville Press 
1985 “On Your Marks,” Crafts Magazine Vol. 10, UK
“Special Issue,” Design Magazine Vol. 10 (cover article), UK

Residencies and Artist Talks
2018 Artist Talk, Interior Design Magazine’s Top 100 Hospitality Giants Annual Summit, Montreal, October 29
Artist Talk, Craft in America Center, Los Angeles, April 21
Artist Talk, San Diego State University, San Diego, April 9
2017 Artist Talk, Google Campus, Santa Monica, CA, March 9
2012/13 Residency, ArtSpace, New Haven, CT
2001 Residency, California College of Arts and Crafts, San Francisco
1991 Residency, Hooke Park, Beaminster, UK

Public Collections
Victoria and Albert Museum, UK
Musée des Arts Décoritifs, France
Fonds National D’Art Contemporian, France 
Vitra Design Museum, Switzerland
Ulster Museum, Northern Ireland
Manchester City Art Galleries and Museums, UK

Public Art Commissions
2017 Monarch Beach Resort, Dana Point, CA
2016 Atelier Luxury Apartments, Downtown, Los Angeles, CA
1999 Tyrebagger Sculpture Trust, Scotland, UK
1997 Leicester City Challenge, UK
London Filmmakers Co-Operative, UK
1996 Northumberland County Council, UK
Gallery of Modern Art, Glasgow, UK

Teaching Positions. Masters and Undergraduate Programs, Selected
2001/17 California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA
2003/05 Anderson Ranch Art Center, Aspen, CO
1995/96 Akademie Industriele Vormgeving, Eindhoven, The Netherlands
1993/96 Middlesex University, UK
1991/97 Royal College of Art, UK
1990/92 Buckinghamshire College, UK

CV PDF for download