• josutherstphotography

Final Major Project: Considering Others – Mary Reid Kelley

Mary Reid Kelley creates videos that are a combination of performance, poetry, and painting. The resultant surreal stories are black and white observations of gender and class issues.

Reid Kelley plays all of her own characters that speak in verse. She often works in collaboration with her partner Patrick Kelley to produce the work.

Video 1: (Mary Reid Kelley at Fredericks & Freiser, Best of The Armory Show 2012, by [dNASAb] 2012)

In each video, the setting and staging are meticulously created by Reid Kelley. She keeps the eyes of the characters obscured, hidden behind makeup and props. This makes the characters distant, mysterious, and out of reach to the viewer.

Her characters also wear mime makeup. Reid Kelley does this as it “makes them less like a real person and more like a mask, or a cipher, or a graffiti.” (Segal and Segal 2016). She paints on facial features like wrinkles and scars as well as facial hair.

Video 2: (Mary Reid Kelley & Patrick Kelley – “Why Does Mary Play All the Characters?” 2015)

Reid Kelley explores ideas that we have multiple personalities and she plays this out in her video works. This intrigues me and is something that I will be exploring through my work.

Video 3: (Mary Reid Kelley – “On Embarrassment” 2015)


SEGAL, CORINNE and CORINNE SEGAL. 2016. “Video artist, MacArthur fellow Mary Reid Kelley on recovering history’s lost narratives”. PBS NewsHour [online]. Available at: https://www.pbs.org/newshour/arts/mary-reid-kelley-video-history [accessed 5 April 2018].


Video 1: Mary Reid Kelley at Fredericks & Freiser, Best of The Armory Show 2012, by [dNASAb]. 2012. YouTube [online]. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ne_q46WKlkY [accessed 5 April 2018].

Video 2: Mary Reid Kelley & Patrick Kelley – “Why Does Mary Play All the Characters?”. 2015. YouTube [online]. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=83SXAK816w0 [accessed 5 April 2018].

Video 3: Mary Reid Kelley – “On Embarrassment”. 2015. YouTube [online]. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JRZwJgn5gg [accessed 5 April 2018].

#April2018 #FracturedIdentities

Recent Posts

See All

Final Major Project: Selected by…

As part of the Source Graduate Online Photography 2018, Source commission a number of respected figures from the world of photography. These selectors choose their favourite sets of images from all th

©2019 by Jo Sutherst Photography - Critical Research Journal. Proudly created with Wix.com