Maria Ogedengbe, MFA Yale University School of Art

  • recent solo exhibitions/displays
  • 2016 Roeland Park Community Center, Roeland Park, KS: Sis !
  • 2015 Missouri Bank: Painting Contest: MO real ArtBoards commission
  • 2014 University of Port Harcourt, NIGERIA: my Sister ! sculpture installed on campus
  • 2013 University of Lagos, NIGERIA: Kampala Canopy presented on campus
  • 2013 Fairleigh Dickinson University Metropolitan Campus gallery: Bespoken
  • 2012 University of Lagos Visual Arts Gallery, NIGERIA: Fabric Friezes
  • 2011 Leedy-Voulkos Art Center: neoPANOS
  • 2010 Centro Fotográfico Manuel Álvarez Bravo - Oaxaca, MEXICO: Bessie Mae/Béseme y otras
  • 2010 Storefront for Art at BNIM Architects: Frieze, in 10 storefront windows
  • 2008 Avila University, Thornhill Gallery: mariaurora


ESTUDIO mariaurora is an art and design studio producing hybrid works that often integrate textiles and reflect interests in African arts.  Long, hi-res photo friezes depict textile constructions and can be presented framed or mounted directly to the wall - the frieze imagery can cycle seamlessly every few feet, potentially covering the entire breadth of a wall. Other works explore comparisons between painting and textile arts or fashion and often involve dyeing and installation.  Community and school projects begin with research into local history and concerns to identify meaningful themes toward developing an engaging narrative basis for collaboration.  The shekere, an instrument fashioned from a gourd covered in beaded macramé, is a concept the artist is currently exploring.  Shekeres originate from West Africa where they are produced by tailors.  As a creative project, the shekere spans gardening, textile arts, and music-making.

ESTUDIO mariaurora contact
1600 Genessee Street, #516 & 518
Kansas City, Missouri 64102 USA

• within a block or so of Plug Projects, Haw Contemporary, Bill Brady / KC and 50/50
30+ antique marts in the neighborhood are open every 1st Friday weekend

  • article / review excerpts
  • Chelsea von Hasseln, "Interview with Maria Ogedengbe" Pattern Observer, 2016:  "Each place where I studied dyeing was quite different from the others. At the workshop in Oshogbo students work mainly in hand drawn batik, in Kogi State matrons run a paste resist workshop, in Akerele/Lagos students work alongside Nigerian and Gambian men whose livelihood is dyeing cloth and the emphasis is on printed batik and tie & dye.In Abeokuta, every last person seems to be involved in dyeing, from grandmothers to the children when they’re home from school. The economy’s built around hand-dyed cloth and expediency is required to succeed. Variations on alale – a style of tie and dye done with fine hand pleating – are popular. Paste resist is combed in waves over five yard lengths laid on tables, section by section. Elders work at treadle machines sewing systems of folds into yardage, seams that will be pulled apart after dyeing to reveal intricate resist patterns. I was astonished to see fabric paint in Abeokuta and ultimately came to appreciate how it could be quite beautiful when applied sparsely over dyed designs (flecks of bright white compare to tiny rhinestones on “African” lace Nigerians import from Austria, etc.)."  
    also see the related article, Lo-Temp Batik with Maria Ogedengbe

  • Cindy Hoedel, "Artist Maria Ogedengbe channels Greek story..." Kansas City Star, 2015:  "To make her giant billboards, Ogedengbe constructed two still lifes in her studio — one featuring a giant bowl filled with grapes and a second of an ornate hand-dyed batik fringed curtain..."
  • Chelsea von Hasseln, "Featured Artist: Maria Ogedengbe" Pattern Observer, 2015:  "I was so intrigued when Maria Ogedengbe wrote us to share the news about a public commission of hers that was recently presented on two billboards in Kansas City, entitled Painting Contest: MO real. The overlap of textiles, fine art and design is such rich ground and it is always surprising and inspiring to find textile-inspired art outside of a usual textile-specific space like fashion or interiors."
  • Erica Smith, "Maria Ogedengbe is my Sister!", 2014:  "In a small art studio located in the West Bottoms there are stacks of hand patterned fabrics ...a sculpture of a girl looks out the window.  ...(in Nigeria) Maria found a people 'known for their love of fabrics.'  A people who take pride in the way they dress.   She found women who call each other 'sister' whether they are related or not. 'It’s a nice sensibility, a caring sensibility.   I think it would be good if America adopted this sensibility...  I don't think I was really aware that Kansas City had a Sister City in the country until after I returned from my first trip and noticed the Nigerian flag flying on the footbridge over Brush Creek on the Plaza here in Kansas City.'"
  • Maria Ogedengbe, "Sew Goddess," Plug Projects' 8 ½ x 11 (see p. 25), 2014:  "Drawing closer to Oshogbo, we pass the chicken and catfish farm where coops are situated over ponds, then we come to a restaurant where catfish stew is on offer for about 50 cents.  In a windowless dining room, we rinse our right hands in water from a colorful kettle before and after supping.  Outside, a woman bending forward at the waist balances a baby with its belly to her back and then wraps him to her with a length of fabric.  At the art gallery in Lagos, Niké recounts stories pictured in a few of her batiks I purchased along the way.  She mentions that you need to keep an eye on your tailor to insure he doesn’t help himself to some of the cloth for your job..."
  • Megan Fry, "Bespoken at FDU," The Equinox, 2013:  "Why not make art you can see every day?  That is exactly the approach that Maria Creyts, a Kansas City artist (takes)... The exhibit title, Bespoken, refers to made-to-measure clothing, 'something custom made and often... created through the maker working closely with the client.'  Examples include a shimmering red taffeta dress for a graphic designer and a traditional African ensemble made for a model... inspired by the royal family Creyts met while in Nigeria studying under Niké Davies Okundaye... Creyts says of her (custom clothing design), 'it's a sort of art that can be presented in an informal and immediate way - you just walk in wearing it.'  And Creyts practices what she preaches - the dress that she wore to the gallery talk on February 5 was of her own design... Creyts trained as a painter... so it is not surprising that these panoramic shots make great use of composition and color."
  • Tom Ryan, "Maria Creyts' Trans-Atlantic runway," crossroads and currents, 2012:  "These creations came from her personal fabric of experience. She fashioned a postcard from a land far away, and rather than posting it, gave it life… on a runway in June this year as the sun set on 18th Street in the Crossroads of Kansas City. A long way from Nigeria. Out of context? Hardly.  The runway seemed to reach for another continent. The patterns evoked smiles.  Clothes can establish a personal mood and project a message. What we wear says something about us, so they say.  Consider Maria’s designs for a moment. The fabric patterns tell a story...  We know exotic when we see it. Maria saw it in the exotic place and brought it here, then projected it east on 18th Street, and stretched her arms across an ocean to a place she learned to love. It may be a stretch to wear these designs in certain contexts and yet fashion is transportable and the transporter can alter the context of a place by simply walking by."
  • Dana Self, "Panoramic Patterns," Kansas City Star, 2011:  "...a curious media traveler, someone who refuses to let a material’s limitations or its nature stand in the way of her inquisitiveness.  The computer is her ally.”  “Each panoramic print has a particular personality, because of the fabrics and colors Creyts selects… Do the fabrics have any meaning outside of color and shapes or do they now only service the photographed and redesigned image? Creyts’ work may not answer these questions and it may not have to. For her, the endgame is not to reveal what the textiles may have meant, but, rather, it’s to manipulate the imagery into a singular and altogether different object."
  • Steve Brisendine, "Layers of Newness: mariaurora," ARTKC365 / Review Magazine, 2011:  “The question at hand: Is assembling a piece of art, and then photographing/extending it into something bigger than the original, a form of copying or the creation of an entirely new work?  …And here, the question in her words: What aspect of my production constitutes the original ? While the photo mural depicts a subject I create, I fashion it so that it is greater than the assemblage from which it started in a variety of ways…. The photo, then, becomes both a record of the original and a new creation in itself… and so, to answer Creyts' question, each piece is an original in its own way.”
  • Ashley Ruzich, “mariaurora in Studio at Leedy-Voulkos,” Review Magazine, 2011:  “…as grown women, we understand what we must do - and what was done in the past - to keep family together, to nurture, and to respect those so-called traditional roles that women play, and moreover, to respect traditional women’s work. The photo friezes at the Leedy-Voulkos address this respect and show another side to tedious dedication: a post-modern labor of love. The photo friezes look innocent enough with their bright colors and highly texturized compositions. But they really beg us to interact and to discover the process through careful examination…. An exciting photo frieze is Spruce, with its crocheted edging and ostrich feathers. It has candy-stripe peaks and embroidered evergreen colored fabric. This particular photo frieze embodies characteristics of a landscape…”
  • Blair Schulman, artist profile for Artist INC website, 2010:  "In 2008, Maria showed a very large (32 inch by 16 foot) modular mural in the Thornhill Gallery a Avila University in Kansas City.  Later on, she began using a smaller printer and with this made narrower and longer pieces.  The ability to shift to a digital format (from making paintings) has been an innovation in Maria's studio practice."
  • Adelia Ganson, review of "Her Art, Who Does She Think She Is ?," Review Magazine, 2010:  "The World Is My Pearl by Maria Creyts/mariaurora is a large mixed-media wall installation, directly related to pleated clothing or draperies. Emphasis is added by the use of over-sized pearl forms draped over the piece... These elements, coupled with bold patterning, serve to emphasize and highlight decorative elements seen in clothing and accessories."
  • Steve Brisendine, "A Good Day for Frieze-ing: mariaurora Open Studio," ARTKC365, 2009:  “It really would take an in-person visit to Creyts' new studio, though, to appreciate the sheer scope of her digital photo friezes and to see the original still life arrangements of fabric and lace.  The image above is only an excerpt of Spruce, which is 13 inches high but has its width listed as ‘variable’. Translation: It's long. And if Creyts wants to, she can make it realllly long. (The longest of her works in a recent show in Spokane, Washington, logged in at 16 feet.)…  Looking at Spruce, for example, it's possible to see every subtle shading in the plaid area and each individual strand of fringe. Creyts describes the effect as ‘sumptuous’, and she's right.”
  • Tyson Habein, “First Friday ArtWalk,” SPOKEaNe Magazine, 2009:  "Maria Creyts’ work was very interesting in that I hadn’t seen anything like it before. Creating textile pieces that are then photographed and used to create friezes, some stretching as long as 16 feet, Maria’s work takes a few moments to absorb... her images have depths of color and visual texture that shouldn’t be missed."
  • Jasmine Linabary, “Get to know: Katie Creyts,” The Whitworthian, 2009:  “(Katie) Creyts' most influential person is her older sister, Maria, also an artist. 'Her work as an artist kind of opened up how to do it for me, not just in the mechanics but how to be dauntless,' Creyts said."
  • Sarah Mote, review of lacey, Kansas City Star, 2008:  "Creyts’ three photo friezes are irresistible.  Part tidy, part tease, 'Bessie Mae/Bésame' (Spanish for 'kiss me') is a 10-foot vertical frieze, where layers of lace, net, tulle and braid dance over candy-striped fabric. Creyts switches to the horizontal with 'Anima' and 'Home Deco.' 'Anima' combines punk pink plaid with a fur-trimmed row of hook and eyes that, writes Creyts, seems 'on the verge of bursting open.' And 'Home Deco' is a delightful flirt with its yellow pompoms, lacy ruffle and damask-inspired wallpaper, which is coquettishly peeling up at the photo’s edge."

Missouri GOURDen
GOURDen Party
Pattern Observer batik lesson
Pattern Observer interview
Kansas City Star interview
Pattern Observer featured artist
PatternBase featured artist bio
PatternBase interview
surface design on PatternBase: 1 & 2
surface design on Spoonflower: 1 & 2

In "Panoramic Patterns," Kansas City Star critic Dana Self writes, Ms. Ogedengbe is "a curious media traveler, someone who refuses to let a material’s limitations or its nature stand in the way of her inquisitiveness," adding, "The computer is her ally."

Addie Bara
Paige Beltowski
Shenequa Brooks
Kalee Burgess
Sarah Freeland
Dayna Freeman
Chaz Harris
Kimberly Heinrich
Brooke Howard
"Sunny" Dung Ngo
Christin Nichols
Jessica Ricketson
Michelle Schmidlkofer
Kyndra Van der Stelt

Using Format