Nancy Mladenoff (b. 1957) was born in Wakefield, Michigan and grew up in Hurley, Wisconsin where she explored the prairies and ponds, woods and fields of her small iron ore mining community. She received a BS at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and an MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. In her work, Mladenoff melds the innocence of childhood and the wisdom of maturity into a subtle commentary on childhood, nature, and gender stereotypes. Her work has been influenced in part by artists Robert Smithson, Jan Dibbets, Barbara Kruger, Jenny Holzer, and Vernon Fisher, and she has found inspiration in children’s books from bygone eras. Mladenoff’s pieces have been featured in exhibitions at the Pack Schopf Gallery in Chicago, the International Forest Art Center in Darmstadt, Germany, the Cultural Exchange Station in Tabor, Czech Republic, Lademoen Kunstner Verkstedet in Trondheim, Norway, the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, the Museu de Arte de Brazil, the Milwaukee Art Museum, and the Transmission Gallery of Glasgow, Scotland.