The Lead On, Creatively series highlights TCU College of Fine Arts alumni, students and faculty who are putting their passion into practice.
We spoke to Kaylee Meyer, a second-year studio art major, about her unique creation that was recently on display at 400 Houston Street Gallery & Studio. Kaylee was featured in “Looking Forward,” an exhibition celebrating the talent and creativity of women artists in Fort Worth.
Why did you choose to pursue studio art at TCU?
I chose to pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts because it was my dream to live a creative life. Creating has always been my way of processing my life experience. Out of all the universities I applied to, TCU was the only one that felt like they really saw me and believed in me as an artist.
What was the inspiration for your exhibit, The Living Room?
I knew it was an opportunity to take a risk and create something ephemeral and experiential. The exhibition only lasted a couple of weeks and gained meaning because of its temporary nature.
“The Living Room” is a nod to our role as stewards of the world, specifically the non-human one. In this space, I’m growing micro-greens around the bodice of a chandelier, table, and two chairs thus recreating a domestic household area where you’d usually relax, eat, and have conversations. By bringing these objects to life, I’m removing their original purpose while preserving their symbolism.
As an artist, I work to cultivate a sense of connection and kinship between an individual and nature. So, it only seemed right to work with plants themselves. I spent five weeks testing how to grow different seeds on different fabrics and textures while combating mold. I settled on cheesecloth for my material and chia micro-greens for my plant.
From there, I spent a weekend wrapping and sewing layers of cheesecloth and paper towels to furniture. I soaked and applied the seeds, ensured they got adequate sunlight and watered them six times a day. It was a big commitment!
How did the opportunity arise to have your work featured in “Looking Forward,” an exhibition of women artists in Fort Worth?
My high school art teacher, Amy Jenkins, invited me to submit artwork for “Looking Forward.” I was honored to be part of the exhibition celebrating women artists in Fort Worth. I’m proud to be a part of our community and what we are building.
The more my artwork gets exhibited, the more I learn about what kind of artist I want to be and to celebrate with others. Even though I created “The Living Room,” I am just a result of my environment and the people I meet (all of which I am very grateful for).
What motivates you to create your artwork?
I believe the world is alive and breathing, something to celebrate. My work is a way to give nature a platform and a voice to communicate both honesty and awe. I want to remind people that they are part of this living world, just like my artwork and just like me. We are all in this together.
What’s next for you?
I’m working on new artwork to display soon and writing a fiction novel about an artist I hope to illustrate and publish this year! After graduation, I plan to pursue a Master of Fine Arts and give back as a professor while continuing to create artwork and bring it into public spaces and communities.