Ms. Mary Ellen Croteau

Chicago, Illinois

Jun 22, 1950 – Feb 16, 2019 (Age 68)

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Artist and agitator Mary Ellen Croteau was best known for making work with bottle caps and other non-recycled plastic waste in an effort to demonstrate the huge amounts of trash we are consuming and sending into the environment. As a radical feminist and a crusader for social, environmental, and economic justice, she fearlessly addressed the absurdities of social norms through her work and life.

Mary Ellen died at age 68 on February 16, 2019. Born on June 22, 1950 in Chicago, Illinois to the late Catherine M. Croteau and the late Thomas A. Croteau, Mary Ellen graduated from Elizabeth Seton high school in 1968, from University of Illinois at Chicago in 1990, and she achieved a Master's Degree in Fine Arts from Rutgers University in 1998. Mary Ellen was the beloved partner of Steve Bild. She is survived by her sons, Vincent Gant and Paul Gant; daughter, Rachael Bild; brothers, Phillip, James, Thomas, Robert, and Guy; sisters, Suzanne, Therese, Juliette, and Catherine; and grandchild, Pierre Gant. The family invites donations in Mary Ellen's name to Planned Parenthood, the Nature Conservancy, Democracy Now!, or the Greater Chicago Food Depository. Friends and family are invited to attend her memorial service on Sunday, May 12 from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. at Garfield Park Conservatory, 300 N Central Park, Chicago.

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Thank you for bringing an essential body of art on this planet, Dear Mary Ellen. Your art works, your activism and your networking around the globe will keep your spirit alive. I remember the time we could share, carry you in my heart and will keep your spirit alive. My sincere condolences go to your family and all friends.

I'm so sorry to hear that Mary Croteau has passed away. Her art work is incredible - her color sensibility and depth of the visual and mental impact she can create. Sort of make you gasp with recognition. Love of earth.I never met her but I think her work is important and should be everywhere in the world.

I love Mary Ellen's recycled art and outspokenness. I know her family and friends will miss her.

Our sincere condolences to Mary Ellen's family. She was an outstanding artist. Her activism is a model for all of us. We grieve her passing and send comforting thoughts to all who will miss her.

You will always be my hero Mary Ellen. Thank you for encouraging all of us to make a difference

MaryEllen's giant, inspirational presence will definitely be missed. My deepest condolences to her children and husband, and her entire family.

Your generous spirit and infectious laughter will be missed.

My condolences to Steve and all of Mary's family. She was the inspiration for many and we can only hope to honour her by continuing some of the ways in which she used her talents to help make the world a better place.

What a gem. She was a great sister and role model. Missing you every day Mary Ellen.

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