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"You Make Me Iliad"Mary Reid Kelley
Filmed in 2011 at Mary Reid Kelley’s home and studio in Saratoga Springs, New York, the video artist and painter discusses her video work You Make Me Iliad (2010). In researching the lives and experiences of women who lived during the first World War, Reid Kelley was struck by how few first-hand accounts she was able to uncover.
By creating an imagined narrative involving a prostitute, a soldier, and a medical officer, Mary Reid Kelley attempted to reconstitute an experience that would have otherwise been lost to history.More information and credits
Producer: Ian Forster. Consulting Producer: Wesley Miller & Nick Ravich. Interview: Susan Sollins. Camera: Joel Shapiro. Sound: Roger Phenix. Editor: Morgan Riles. Artwork Courtesy: Mary Reid Kelley. Special Thanks: Patrick Kelley. Theme Music: Peter Foley.
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In videos and drawings filled with punning wordplay, Mary Reid Kelley presents her take on the clash between utopian ideologies and the realities of women’s lives in the struggle for liberation and through political strife, wars, and other historical events. Performing scripted narratives in rhyming verse, the artist, with various family members, explores historical periods through fictitious characters. Adopting a stark black-and-white palette while synthesizing art-historical styles such as Cubism and German Expressionism, Reid Kelley playfully jumbles historical period to trace the ways in which present concerns are rooted in the past.