As an art teacher and artist, Mary Jo Kattelman draws inspirations from history and nature to teach art and create her own art. She strives to communicate nature’s fragile state and our place in the natural world. Born and raised in rural Michigan, she was influenced by the devastating pollution of Lake Erie and the 1970’s environmental movement. She moved to rural Missouri and earned her BSE from NMSU. Living, gardening, raising a family, she continued her art and watched as conservation programs of the 80’s improved habitat and reduced human impact on ecosystems.
She has shown her work throughout the Midwest and has received numerous awards; examples are Best-of-Show at MAEA (Missouri Art Educators member show, 2nd place at Mary Oakley Lindsay Artist Showcase, and a prestigious showing at DeVos Center in Grand Rapids, MI at Artprize 2015. She received Elementary Art Teacher award and the Kantner Research Award for work on visual literacy between Missouri schools and two schools in Madagascar. Her hobbies include her life: sailing, hiking, cycling, gardening, a conservation advocate, teaching and creating art.