Homebodies no. 12 – Kellee Morgado

Homebodies no. 12 – Kellee Morgado

The Homebodies series explores the personal spaces of community members, the artworks and interesting objects they’ve collected through the years, and how those pieces live with them every day. For a few posts, we’ve asked members of our gallery committee for a tour. Kellee Morgado is an interdisciplinary artist finishing up their Redfield Fellowship with the Black Rock Press at the University of Nevada, Reno. They recently just launched their book “Don’t Cut Your Hair It’s Beautiful” which is on display at multiple venues in Reno, Nevada including the Holland Project Library. Check out the launch here.

Click images to enlarge

1. This is one of several works of my own works I have in the house. It was a project for a digital photography class I was taking in undergrad. We had to choose from a list a photographer to mimic or be inspired by. I chose Yasumasa Morimura. I really was attracted to the way he transforms his own looks to resemble others including Vincent van Gogh, Marilyn Monroe and more. As someone who enjoys costumes, make-up and halloween I was drawn to him. I quickly realized that it was beyond my budget to produce three different images and have three different successful costumes. So instead, I decided to reflect on the exploration of the self in this self portrait series. All three are me, but the middle is how I present myself to the world. 

2. I bought this print from Ally Messer at a Holland Project event! I believe it was the Swap Meet held last year. Several of Ally’s prints had caught my eye, but I fell for this sweet little loaf on some handmade paper. I love it and it’s sweet little face makes me smile. Ally was one of the first people I met when arriving in Reno, NV in August 2018 and was a student worker at Black Rock Press, introduced me to Holland and Laika Press. 

3. Greg is a frequent attendee to a Life Drawing class at E.L. Cord Museum School at the Nevada Museum of Art. He was always in attendance on Tuesday/Thursday classes. After the initial quick 1-5 minute poses, Steve would have his small oil paint set up and easel ready to go where he would do the remaining 4 thirty minute poses in oil paints. I was always blown away at these quick paintings that he did twice a week (maybe more) and apparently just stored in boxes in his garage he had said. The guy must have hundreds of these small paintings by now and I honestly want him to have a show. Needless to say, I took this one off his hands.

4. I purchased this print at a silent auction during the end of two weeks at Penland School of Craft. I had received a work trade scholarship to take a book art workshop led by Macy Chadwick there. Alex Chapman was in the studio building next door taking a printmaking workshop led by Althea Murphy-Price. I really loved Alex’s prints and actually purchased two! I lost the other when my basement rental in Boone, NC flooded when the pipes thawed after a freeze. However, this print still makes me smile. My favorite is the small dollhouse-sized objects at the top of the cupboard. Though I didn’t spend a lot of time getting to know Alex, they had plans to attend MICA and did end up attending. 

5. I went to school with Eliana E. Rodriguez at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC. She was in the art building pursuing a BFA in studio art and I often saw her working on ceramics and printmaking. When I saw her selling several cacti prints on her Instagram, I felt compelled to purchase one having just moved to the desert. Eliana made these prints for Latinx Heritage Month and part of the proceeds went to RAICES. 

6. I bought this print and a zine from Marisa Ray at the same Holland Project event, the Swap Meet, that I bought Ally’s sweet loaf print. I loved its simplicity, color and abstraction. I really love all of Marisa’s abstracted nude contour line work.

7. When Chelsi, my partner, moved in with me, she brought a plethora of awesome art. One such piece is one that she herself made in a fibers class. I believe she was actually learning to spin her own wool in this class as well. As someone interested in botany and plants, Chelsi made this sweet felted image of a California poppy.

8. I acquired this print from Nick Osetek while taking a relief printmaking class while completing my undergraduate degree at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC. Nick was the class studio monitor/assistant. Super talented artist, printmaker and illustrator, Nick offered to trade me this print for a linocut  relief I had made of a desert scape with two Volkswagen buses. It is awesome to have some of his work. In addition to being talented in many artistic endeavors, Nick also worked in the school wood shop. He was always friendly and helpful. Nick actually played a huge part in a collaborative design project SEAM that myself and three other design students organized as part of our senior studio project. Nick constructed a huge 16’ x 16’ wooden frame that would suspend from the gallery ceiling to hang all our upcycled and altered wears. Nick looked over my sketches, went with me to the hardware store to get wood and supplies, and constructed the frames. He even was there for the night of install and saved our butts a few times with some last minute alterations. I am forever grateful for his kindness and collaboration to make that exhibition come to life.

9. I also bought this print at the silent auction at Penland School of Craft from another student in the same printmaking class as Alex Chapman lead by Althea Murphy-Price. I can’t remember their name, but they had several one offs of a variety of different backgrounds with the same self portrait. This one also survived the basement flood, though it did get a little water damage in the lower left corner. I love this print for the color and contour lines. 

10-11. These two long sleeved shirts are just two of the four wearable works I have from my friend and former graphic design classmate at Appalachian State University. Jason S. Wright is not only multidisciplinary, but the amount of work he creates constantly blows my mind. He just finished his graduate degree at Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts in Richmond, VA. Some of Jason’s works include painting, zines, publications, seltzer water, and apparel.