Mary Hu : Superlative Treasures

November 29, 2020 – January 1, 2021


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Mary Hu
Bracelet #37.

Twined 22k and 18k gold, Lapis Lazuli. 1986.


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Mary Hu
Earrings #126.

1988. 18k & 22k gold. Twined and hammered.


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×
Mary Hu
Choker #78.

18 and 22k, 30 gauge gold wire. Twined, tessellated, hammered. 1991.


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Mary Hu
Brooch #38

Twined 18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Earrings

18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Bracelet #17.

1982. Fine & sterling silver, 14K gold. Twined, soldered.


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×
Mary Hu
Brooch #39

Twined 18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Ring #111

wined 18K and 22K gold


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×
Mary Hu
Brooch #40

Twined 18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Choker #75

1988. Twined 18K and 22K gold


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×
Mary Hu
Bracelet #18

1982. Fine and sterling silver, 24K gold


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×
Mary Hu
Brooch #43

Twined 18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Earrings

18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Brooch #20.

2008. 18k and 22k gold.


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×
Mary Hu
Brooch #33 (Orchid)

Twined 18K and 22K gold


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×
Mary Hu
Brooch #44

Twined 18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Necklace #91.

Twined 18k and 22k gold.


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×
Mary Hu
Necklace

Fine and sterling silver.


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×
Mary Hu
Necklace

Fine and sterling silver.


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×
Mary Hu
Brooch #45

Twined 18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Brooch #46

Twined 18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Earrings #193

Twined 18K and 22K gold


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×
Mary Hu
Earrings

18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Brooch #47

Twined 18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Earrings #206. 2012.

18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Earrings

Twined 18K and 22K gold


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×
Mary Hu
Bracelet #66

Twined 18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Choker #93

Twined 18K and 22K gold


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×
Mary Hu
Ring #110

18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Bracelet #53

1998. 18k and 22k gold.


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×
Mary Hu
Earrings #214

18k and 22k gold


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×
Mary Hu
Earrings #192

18k and 22k gold


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×
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  • 60.-M-Hu-Bracelet37_0415-copy-D2-3150x2100-2
    Mary Hu
    Bracelet #37.

    Twined 22k and 18k gold, Lapis Lazuli. 1986.

    31/4” × 23/4” × 1/2”

    Interior opening: 21/2” × 2"

    Proceeds from the sale of Bracelet #37 will go toward a Research Fellowship Fund for Jewelry & Metalsmithing which Mary Hu has established.

    Bracelet #37, completed in 1986, is perhaps the most iconic and beloved of Hu’s bracelets (it is the artist’s personal favorite). Hu began twining in all gold in the early 1980s. Jeannine Falino, former curator of American Decorative Arts and Sculpture at the MFA, Boston writes, “Using this technique (twining), Hu is able to create elegant refined curves based upon deft handling of the warp, which can be appreciated in one of her rare bracelets that includes a carved lapis lazuli (Bracelet #37)."


    Marcia Manhart, Curator of the “Eloquent Object: The Evolution Of American Art In Craft Media Since 1945” which originated at the Philbrook Art Museum in 1978, featured Bracelet #37 in that exhibition (Pictured on page 46 of the accompanying book of the same name). She wrote about Bracelet #37, “Hu’s woven gold bracelet represents a penchant for experimentation with classical structure and materials juxtaposed in new combinations. She imparts exquisite form to the material.”


    Museum exhibitions for Bracelet #37 include: Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, 1989; Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, 1989; Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, 1990; Chaney Cowles Memorial Museum, Spokane, WA, 1991; Boise Art Museum, 1991; Seattle Art Museum, 1993; Metal Museum, Memphis, 1994; Tacoma Art Museum, 2000-2001; Nordjyllands Kunstmuseum, Aalborg, Denmark, 2001; Tonder Museum, Denmark, 2002; Fuller Museum, Brockton, MA, 2004; Cranbrook Museum, 2004; and Bellevue Arts Museum, Bellevue, WA, 2012.

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  • 85.-Earrings-126-1988-2
    Mary Hu
    Earrings #126.

    1988. 18k & 22k gold. Twined and hammered.

    1 3/4” x 1 1/4” x 1/2"

    Proceeds from the sale of Bracelet #37 will go toward a Research Fellowship Fund for Jewelry & Metalsmithing which Mary Hu has established.

    The design of the Earrings #126 was inspired by ancient Celtic Torques. The earrings are a combination of twining and hammered tube shapes. Technically similar to Bracelet #47 (Collection of MFA, Boston) and Bracelet #41 (MAD, New York), Hu calls the pair “a slice of a bracelet” (but smaller). Hu states, “They are simply my favorite earrings. That is why I kept them.”


    Museum exhibitions for Earrings #126 include: Tacoma Art Museum, 1989; Cheney Cowles Memorial Museum, Spokane, WA, 1991; Boise Art Museum, 1991; Southern Ohio Museum, Portsmouth, 1994; The McDonough Museum, Youngstown State University, 1994; Ohio Craft Museum, Columbus, 1994; and Bellevue Arts Museum, 2012.

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Choker #78.

    18 and 22k, 30 gauge gold wire. Twined, tessellated, hammered. 1991.

    6 3/8" × 8 7/8" × 1 1/2". Hand fabricated clasp.

    Proceeds from the sale of Choker #78 will go toward a Research Fellowship Fund for Jewelry & Metalsmithing which Mary Hu has established.

    Choker #78, made in 1991, is considered the most important necklace in Hu’s series of tessellated geometric neckpieces. It is the only major neckpiece that is woven with extremely thin 30 gauge 18k and 22k gold wire. After making this piece, Hu stopped working with 30 gauge wire because of its difficult size. The repeated geometric shapes are inspired by the construction of woven baskets.


    Choker #78 personifies the assimilation of Hu’s great strengths: visibility of structure, clarity, and balance. Janet Koplos, contributing editor to Art in America writes about Choker #78 in “Knitted, Knotted, Twisted and Twined” the catalog/book accompanying Mary Lee Hu’s exhibition of the same name at the Bellevue Arts Museum. Koplos states, “A stellar example of Hu’s skill is Choker #78, in which the play of positive and negative is particularly noticeable. An amazingly complex structure, it is based on thin circles that overlap, each within a large oval that is defined by both positive elements and negative space; each circle is filled with a broad cross shape constructed of parallel lines. These shapes almost might be tiny baskets that just need to be folded and lashed at the seams to become volumetric. On the other hand, they also vaguely evoke prehistoric axe forms. The overlapping rings are more like Venn diagrams than Olympic Rings or links of chain but can momentarily evoke those as well. The perfection of this piece, as well as its material recalls the work of John Paul Miller — the granulations virtuoso a generation older than Hu but likewise inspired by the past, and likewise committed to gold despite its expense.”


    Museum exhibitions for Choker #78 include: Seattle Art Museum, 1993; Metal Museum, Memphis, TN, 1994; Tacoma Art Museum, 1998; Bruce Gallery, Edinboro University, PA, 2000; Nordjyllands Kunstmuseum, Aalborg, 2001; Tonder Museum, Denmark, 2002; Columbus Museum of Art, OH, 2004; and Cranbrook Art Museum, 2004.

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    Mary Hu
    Brooch #38

    Twined 18k and 22k gold

    3” - 3 1/4” diameter

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Earrings

    18k and 22k gold

    Inquire

  • 31.-Bracelet-17-1982-1250x1046
    Mary Hu
    Bracelet #17.

    1982. Fine & sterling silver, 14K gold. Twined, soldered.

    4" × 3 1/2" × 3/4"

    Inquire

  • Brooch-39-2018
    Mary Hu
    Brooch #39

    Twined 18k and 22k gold

    3” - 3 1/4” diameter

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Ring #111

    wined 18K and 22K gold

    19.87mm inside diameter. ~ Size 10.

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  • Brooch-40-2018
    Mary Hu
    Brooch #40

    Twined 18k and 22k gold

    3” - 3 1/4” diameter

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Choker #75

    1988. Twined 18K and 22K gold

    7" x 6 1/4" x 3/4"

    Choker #75 was included in the following museum exhibitions:
    1991 "Artists at Work: 25 Norhwest Glassmakers, Ceramicists & Jewelers", Cheney Cowles Memorial Museum, Spokane, WA & Boise Art Museum, ID
    1992 "Repair Days Reunion", National Ornamental Metal Museum, Memphis, TN
    1993 "Mary Lee Hu: Master Metalsmith", National Ornamental Metals Museum, Memphis, TN
    2001 "Under the Influence", Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma, WA
    2001 "Flet/Braid Exhibition", Nordjyllands Kunstmuseum, Aalborg, Denmark & Tonder Museum, Denmark

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    Mary Hu
    Bracelet #18

    1982. Fine and sterling silver, 24K gold

    3/4” × 3/4“ × 5/8”

    Inquire

  • Brooch-43-2019
    Mary Hu
    Brooch #43

    Twined 18k and 22k gold

    3” - 3 1/4” diameter

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Earrings

    18k and 22k gold

    Inquire

  • 67-Brooch-20-2008
    Mary Hu
    Brooch #20.

    2008. 18k and 22k gold.

    3 1/4" × 1 1/2" × 1/2"

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Brooch #33 (Orchid)

    Twined 18K and 22K gold

    3.75" x 4.75" x 1"

    Inquire

  • Brooch-44-2019
    Mary Hu
    Brooch #44

    Twined 18k and 22k gold

    3” - 3 1/4” diameter

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Necklace #91.

    Twined 18k and 22k gold.

    6 3/4" × 6 1/2" × 3/8"

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Necklace

    Fine and sterling silver.

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Necklace

    Fine and sterling silver.

    Inquire

  • Brooch-45-2019
    Mary Hu
    Brooch #45

    Twined 18k and 22k gold

    3” - 3 1/4” diameter

    Inquire

  • Brooch-46-2019
    Mary Hu
    Brooch #46

    Twined 18k and 22k gold

    3” - 3 1/4” diameter

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Earrings #193

    Twined 18K and 22K gold

    2.5" x 1" x .4"

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Earrings

    18k and 22k gold

    Inquire

  • Brooch-47-2019
    Mary Hu
    Brooch #47

    Twined 18k and 22k gold

    3” - 3 1/4” diameter

    Inquire

  • Hu-Earrings-blk-sm
    Mary Hu
    Earrings #206. 2012.

    18k and 22k gold

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Earrings

    Twined 18K and 22K gold

    1" x 7/8" x 1/2"

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Bracelet #66

    Twined 18k and 22k gold

    3 1/2" × 3 1/2" × 3"

    Inquire

  • HuML_Necklace_Choker#93.jpg
    Mary Hu
    Choker #93

    Twined 18K and 22K gold

    20" long, central element measures 3" x 4.5"

    Private Collection

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    Mary Hu
    Ring #110

    18k and 22k gold

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Bracelet #53

    1998. 18k and 22k gold.

    Inquire

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    Mary Hu
    Earrings #214

    18k and 22k gold

    Inquire

  • 135962_1024x1024@2x.jpg
    Mary Hu
    Earrings #192

    18k and 22k gold

    Inquire


Mary Hu
Bracelet #37.

Twined 22k and 18k gold, Lapis Lazuli. 1986.


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Earrings #126.

1988. 18k & 22k gold. Twined and hammered.


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Choker #78.

18 and 22k, 30 gauge gold wire.
Twined, tessellated, hammered. 1991.


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Brooch #38

Twined 18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Earrings

18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Bracelet #17.

1982. Fine & sterling silver, 14K gold. Twined, soldered.


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Brooch #39

Twined 18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Ring #111

wined 18K and 22K gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Brooch #40

Twined 18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Choker #75

1988. Twined 18K and 22K gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Bracelet #18

1982. Fine and sterling silver, 24K gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Brooch #43

Twined 18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Earrings

18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Brooch #20.

2008. 18k and 22k gold.


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Brooch #33 (Orchid)

Twined 18K and 22K gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Brooch #44

Twined 18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Necklace #91.

Twined 18k and 22k gold.


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Necklace

Fine and sterling silver.


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Necklace

Fine and sterling silver.


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Brooch #45

Twined 18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Brooch #46

Twined 18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Earrings #193

Twined 18K and 22K gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Earrings

18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Brooch #47

Twined 18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Earrings #206. 2012.

18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Earrings

Twined 18K and 22K gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Bracelet #66

Twined 18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Choker #93

Twined 18K and 22K gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Ring #110

18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Bracelet #53

1998. 18k and 22k gold.


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Earrings #214

18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Hu
Earrings #192

18k and 22k gold


Artwork Inquire Form

×

Mary Lee Hu has been acknowledged for her accomplishments with numerous awards and has been inducted into the American Craft Council’s College of Fellows. She has received three National Endowment of the Arts Craftsman Fellowships. She is also the winner of the 2008 Irving and Yvonne Twining Humber Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement.

“The mathematical and structural order of weaving is an underlying strength in all Hu’s work. Her methodical approach to the woven form has led to decades of fruitful artistic growth, as each technical advance has provided a new springboard for her imagination. Significantly, her willingness to distort and even subvert this order has led to some of her greatest breakthroughs. Softly glowing in all its glory, Hu’s jewelry is a symphony in which the planets are aligned and harmony reigns in the spheres.” – from “Knitted, Knotted, Twisted and Twined” by Stefano Catalani, director of Arts, Crafts and Design at the Bellevue Arts Museum

Mary Hu was born in Lakewood,Ohio in 1943. She received her BFA in Metalsmithing from Cranbook Academy in 1965, and her MFA in Metalsmithing from Southern Illinois University in 1967. She began teaching at The University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, in 1985. She retired as Professor Emeritus in 2006

Hu is a passionate Jewelry Historian and has lead numerous workshops. She has been the inspiration for many artists throughout her extensive career.

Work Represented in Public Collections

Arkansas Art Center, Little Rock, AR

Columbus Museum of Fine Arts, Columbus, OH

Goldsmith Hall, London, England

Illinois State University

Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Museum of Arts & Design (formerly American Crafts Museum), New York City

Museum of Contemporary Art, China Academy of Art, Hangzhou

Renwick Gallery, National Museum of American Art, Washington DC

Spencer Museum of Art, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS

The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City

The Metal Museum (formerly National Ornamental Metals Museum), Memphis, TN

The Museum of Fine Arts Boston

The Museum of Fine Arts Houston

The Newark Museum, Newark, NJ

The Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma, WA

The Victoria and Albert Museum, London, England

The Charles A. Wustum Museum of Fine Arts, Racine, WI

University of Indiana Art Gallery, Bloomington, IN

Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CT