Mara Baldwin was born in Iowa City, Iowa, the daughter of an entomologist and a botanist, and from an early age showed great interest in picking up things and putting them in her pocket to look at later. Her youth was spent in Spain, New Jersey, and eventually Ithaca where she graduated from Ithaca High School in 2002. She received her bachelor of arts in Art History and Studio Art from Wesleyan University (Middletown, CT) where she worked as an exhibitions and print collection intern at the Davison Art Center. While undergoing her studies she also worked for print dealer Charles Young (Portland, CT) and as an intern for small press publisher Robin Price. Her undergraduate summers were spent working as a museum educator for the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston), and conducting interviews with transracial adoptive families with grant funding from the Freeman Foundation. After graduating in 2006, Baldwin moved to Portland, Oregon where she worked for the Portland Art Museum and the Elizabeth Leach Gallery. She was accepted into the master of fine arts program at the California College of Arts in San Francisco where she received her degree in drawing and textiles in 2010. Mara Baldwin's work has been included in exhibitions at PLAySPACE, the San Francisco Arts Commission, SOMArts, UC Berkeley, Triple Base Gallery, Root Division, and Capricious Space (Brooklyn). Her accolades include the Murphy Cadogan Award, an SFMoMA SECA nomination, and residencies with the Vermont Studio Center and Saltonstall Foundation. Upon returning to Ithaca in August 2011 she was appointed as the assistant director of the Handwerker Gallery, and was promoted to the position of acting director in June 2012. She is thrilled to be continuing her work coordinating the Handwerker exhibition and programming calendar for the 2012-2013 academic year while maintaining her own local studio practice.