Juliette M Ludeker is a college research and writing professor, cat sofa, plant servant, and multi-media artist. While she has resided within no fewer than 13 different zip codes, she currently is living and earning a living just outside of Baltimore, Maryland. Additionally, she spends a lot of time in southeastern Pennsylvania because she can’t resist the allure of travelling through the Mushroom Capital of the World and, more importantly, because she has family there.
While her primary medium is photography, she also creates work in mixed media, painting, bookmaking, collage, printmaking, and fibers. She likes to call the stacks of books in her living room “sculpture” but that’s only a euphemism used to cover up her lack of being able to put things back where they belong. Now that she thinks of it, she might use the same term to refer to the overflowing dish rack in the kitchen.
Themes in her work include randomness, accident, the passage of time, decay, nature and phenomena of nature, legacy, identity, invisibility, silence, quiet, and prayer. Her style ranges from macro nature photography to non-objective painting, and she includes among her influences Aaron Siskind, Minor White, Imogen Cunningham, Mark Rothko, and Georgia O’Keeffe.
Juliette holds a BFA in studio arts with a concentration in photography and an MA in teaching English as a Second Language. She completed all but dissertation for a PhD in English, concentrating in rhetoric and composition, so that makes her even more of a cliche. It only makes sense, then, for her to start another graduate degree at some point. Oh wait. She did.
For some unknown reason, after earning her BFA she decided to travel a winding, convoluted journey that took her far away from an Art Life Career and into paid work as, among other things, a retail manager, an EMT, a bank teller, a volunteer coordinator and recruiter, and a product photographer and set dresser for QVC. From there she went on to graduate programs, then to positions as an ESL instructor and as a writing professor. Taking this path has left her with more than a few regrets, but it also has provided her with many stories that only get funnier once everyone/she has had a few drinks. She’s also learned a lot about herself along the way.
Despite taking this path–or perhaps because of it–Juliette has continued her art-making, even without exhibiting extensively or belonging to an art community. The conditions of the pandemic, however, amplified an urgency to do with her life what feels important and purposeful, rather than only to give away her days to things that no longer are (and maybe never were). As such, she’s made a turn back toward having an Art Life at the center of her attentions…after the cats and plants, of course.