Morgan Blair: Illustrator, RISD Grad, New Face


You’ve never heard of Morgan Blair. No one has, really–she’s an illustrator fresh out of RISD, four months into a Bushwick lease, probably still unpacked. But last fall, some of her drawings showed up on Juxtapoz’s online “Reader Art” section–a recurring feature that ranges from undiscovered talent and well, this–which led to an interview with the web site Sezio. These fill-in-the-blank correspondences with people you’ve never heard of are a dime-a-dozen in the internet era, of course, a win-win proposition for all involved: 21st-century ‘zine-makers can only access artists without publicists (the best kind really, but anyway) and such artists are still flattered that a complete stranger would want to reprint their e-mail on a napkin, never mind a web site.

And so here we have this really adorable conversation with Blair, whose crudely rendered drawings of, say, a Crayon-teethed dead-pigeon eater or a neon-pink-foreheaded sea captain are destined for the backside of a Showpaper or a Cinders group show. That hasn’t happened yet, namely because Morgan’s still so new to New York that she’s still overjoyed that the Alligator on Metropolitan gives free pizza with beer (“A free pizza!”). She’s also leapfrogging among freelance jobs (like gluing Swarovski crystals to Styrofoam pears for a Saks Fifth Avenue Christmas-window display), scraping by so intently she “can barely bring myself to buy anything over a dollar.” What makes this so endearing is that with your head temporarily filled by producers desperately trying to document what it feels like to arrive in Brooklyn using asshat puppets swollen with self-importance, this is what it’s like to move to New York as a young creative person, thrilled with the potential for “new faces.” The reality: you get a Bushwick art show in a building famous for bedbugs and you are all exclamation points!!!

Speaking of which, Morgan Blair’s first local show “Hello Bushwick” is opening tomorrow night January 10, from 7 to 9. It even has an animated gif flyer and everything.

This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 9, 2009

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