The Woskob Family Gallery is a space for contemporary arts and culture in downtown State College, PA.
Rebecca Morgan: Our Favorite Interviews
November 21, 2017
Over the past few years, Rebecca Morgan has given some wonderful interviews about her work and artistic process. So, for this week’s blog post, we’ve compiled a few of our favorites. Enjoy our excerpted questions and answers or follow the links to the full interviews.
Leah Oates, “In Conversation: Leah Oates Interviews Rebecca Morgan,” New York Arts Magazine, 2011.
Leah Oates: “What is your background and when did you know you would be an artist?”
Rebecca Morgan: “I am from a conservative farm town in Western Central Pennsylvania, in the Allegheny/Appalachian Mountains. I grew up with a very limited scope and basically non-existent understanding of art and its precedents, even though I drew still lifes with my grandfather and took Saturday art lessons. I was always making or drawing something, using it as an outlet to cope with banality. Claiming any kind of creative profession was never a conversation; the lack of knowledge or exposure, in retrospect, was crippling, and in many ways, I displace the blame on the backwoods environment I lived in. It never occurred to me that people who drew the panels in my dad’s MAD magazine stash (which I poured over and exalted) were doing it for a living; it was just not something people ‘did’…”
Keith Schweitzer, “Interview: Rebecca Morgan,” Art Interviews: New York, October 25, 2015.
Keith Shweitzer: “Your characters, the subjects in your works, are beautiful and bletcherous at the same time. There is something very honest and innocent about them, but they are far from virtuous. They seem blissfully naive and uninhibited. Who are they?”
Rebecca Morgan: “…The face jugs, cartoons and paintings represent a kind of blissful ignorance: they’re totally fine with looking so hideous and awful; it’s of no consequence to them. In my mind, that empowers them. Though covered in acne, wrinkles, and blemishes, their confidence and contentment is the ultimate acceptance of self-love. These characters are blissfully unaware, unruly, wild and untamed. They live off the grid and free, unaffected by anyone or anything’s influence, and I’m very attracted to that concept. I am always interested in the anti-hero, the underdog, the unlikely winner. I root for them and I see a lot of myself in them…”
Kristin Farr, “Rebecca Morgan: Mountain Woman on Top,” Juxtapoz Magazine, May 4, 2016.
Kristin Farr: “How does Pennsylvania Dutch folk art influence you, and how do your ceramics connect to the history of face jugs?”
Rebecca Morgan: “…Face jugs embody a symbolic folk tradition. They’ve been a common image and presence in museums, homes, and antique stores, especially in Appalachia and the South. Slaves used face jugs as grave markers designed to keep the devil away. If they broke while exposed to the elements, it meant the soul was restless, or wrestling with the devil. I always knew face jugs as personally crafted vessels used to store liquor; their features would frighten children so they would not to try to meddle with the contents. My work is an extension of the face jug tradition, expounding on a familiar art object from the country as an homage in my own visual vocabulary…”
For even more about Rebecca Morgan check out:
Michael Shaw, “Ep. # 192: Rebecca Morgan, Clearfield, PA (for now)-based artist via Brooklyn/Pratt…,” The Conversation Art Podcast, June 3, 2017.