Museum Staff Collections: Melissa Kenyon, Director of Marketing & Experience Sharing the Work of Bonnie Maygarden and Christa Blackwood

Get a glimpse into the personal art collection of Ogden Museum Director of Marketing & Experience, Melissa Kenyon! This is the fourth post in a fun Saturday series looking at the art collections belonging to Ogden Museum staff.

Bonnie Maygarden, Compress III, 2017, 40 x 24″

Since joining the Ogden team, I’ve been fortunate to meet many incredibly kind and talented Southern artists. One that I’m especially fond of is the incomparable Bonnie Maygarden!

A little about New Orleans born, Bonnie Maygarden…

My work is informed by and reacts to a culture defined by a digital experience, yet the work’s imagery is created entirely by hand, using only paint. I seek out natural phenomena and illusions that feel familiar to an eye accustomed to imagery found on a screen. My work references recognized technology-created images, such as photography, x-rays or photoshop filters. Through referencing the digital image as well as our natural world, I am able to make paintings that walk the line between something and nothing; that both play to our expectations of the disposable contemporary image and the valued tradition of the handmade.

Maygarden has exhibited extensively, including at the Ogden Museum! Her work was featured in the 2018 exhibition, The Whole Drum will Sound: Women in Southern Abstraction, and she earned second place in the 2018 juried exhibition, Louisiana Contemporary, Presented by The Helis Foundation.

Every October, Ogden Museum hosts the O What a Night Gala, the institution’s top fundraiser – known for its impressive live and silent art auctions. It was at this event that I purchased Compress III, which hangs in my home in a multicolored neon frame made by Bonnie.

Christa Blackwood, Saucido, From the series, Naked Lady: A Dot Red, 18 x 24″, Hand-pulled photogravure

Another artist that I had the opportunity to meet is Christa Blackwood, a photographer included in the Museum’s 2018-19 exhibition, New Southern Photography.

Christa Blackwood is a photo, text and installation artist working with themes related to identity, history and popular culture. Her works employ multiple techniques and methods, fusing traditional, historical and alternative photographic processes with contemporary concepts.

This photograph, Saucido, is from Christa Blackwood’s Naked Lady: A Dot Red series. This series of hand-pulled photogravures “explores new perspectives on traditional genres and images found in landscaped and portrait photography.”

Saucido was another lucky find from the Museum’s O What a Night Gala!