Born Mary Tuthill in Newton, New Jersey in 1912, Mary Lindheim was raised in Tucson, Arizona, where the desert landscape inspired her artistic sensibilities from a young age. As a result of frequent childhood illness, Mary was tutored from home, surrounded by her father’s eclectic library and her mother’s vast collection of multicultural memorabilia. Her formal studies in art began in 1930 at the California School of Fine Arts and the Chouinard Art Institute in Los Angeles. She taught at the University of Washington before enrolling at the California College of Arts and Crafts in 1946 to study with ceramicist Antonia Prieto. After many years of intense artistic output, for which she received numerous awards and accolades, Mary moved to Bolinas, California in 1969 for a slower pace of life. She remained a staunch supporter and educator of the ceramic arts in North America until the end of her life, as well as a passionate political and social activist.