L.A. Contemporary Artist, Mike Kelley, Remembered

  • Artist Mike Kelley (1954-2012).  Photo by Cameron Wittig courtesy Walker Art Center

    Artist Mike Kelley (1954-2012). Photo by Cameron Wittig courtesy Walker Art Center

Known as a pioneering installation artist who put Los Angeles on the map as a contemporary art center in the 1980s, artist Mike Kelley has died at 57.

Pending an autopsy, suicide is a possible cause. He was found in his home in South Pasadena, Calif., on Tuesday evening.

Kelley created "Monkey Island," a performance/installation staged in Metro Pictures in 1982 and Rosamund Felsen Gallery in 1983 that made him well-known.

Later, he switched to different materials creating such pieces as "More Love Hours Than Can Ever Be Repaid" from 1987, an installation of worn rag dolls, animals and blankets.

A collector of Kelley artwork, filmmaker John Waters describes these installations in his 2010 book "Role Models," calling him "the man who made pitiful seem sexy by turning grimy thrift-store stuffed animals into heartbreaking, jaw-droppingly beautiful sculptures by placing them on stained blankets on the floor or facedown on card tables next to one another like dead Jonestown suicide cultists."


More News Feed Headlines

Apulian red-figured kantharos

Art Historian Decries Toledo Museum of Art's Sale of Antiquities

  • October 24, 2016 22:29

Toledo native Joan Connelly, a renowned art expert, nationally known archaeologist, professor, ...

Read More

The Musée d'Orsay

American Couple Donates $281 Million Art Collection to France's Musee d'Orsay

  • October 23, 2016 22:37

American businessman Spencer Hays and his wife Marlene have donated their exceptional 600-piece ...

Read More

Monet’s 1914-17 “Waterlilies With Reflections of Tall Grass” sold at Sotheby's in 2013.

Art Dealer Claims Ownership of Monet Seized in Billion-Dollar 1MDB Scandal

  • October 20, 2016 15:00

The U.S. Department of Justice is seeking to seize $1-billion of assets connected to Malaysia's ...

Read More

Still from supposed Islamic State video showing militants destroying artifacts in Iraq's Unesco World Heritage city of Hatra.

Italian Mafia Trades Arms-for-Art With ISIS in Libya

  • October 18, 2016 15:10

Domenico Quirico, a journalist from La Stampa newspaper, recently went undercover as an art ...

Read More

Related Press Releases

Related Events from ArtfixDaily Calendar


ArtfixDaily Artwire