Dorsky Museum announces Hudson Valley Artists 2018 Purchase Award

Mollie McKinley, Cholla Bag and Toe Hole Stocking, Reaching, 2018, archival inkjet print, courtesy the artist

The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz will acquire a photograph from Mollie McKinley titled “Cholla Bag and Toe Hole Stocking, Reaching,” for its permanent collection.

The purchase is made possible through The Dorsky’s Hudson Valley Artists Annual Purchase Award program, which enables the museum to acquire exceptional work by Hudson Valley artists and enrich its holdings in contemporary art from the region each year.

The Purchase Award is supported by the Alice and Horace Chandler Art Acquisition Fund, and the purchase is made possible through the generosity of the artist.

Mollie McKinley is one of 13 Hudson Valley artists currently exhibiting at The Dorsky Museum as part of “Time Travelers”, the 2018 installment of the annual Hudson Valley Artists exhibition, which is on view at The Dorsky through Nov. 11.

McKinley is an interdisciplinary artist based in the Hudson Valley. Her work includes photography, sculpture, performance, video and text.

In “Cholla Bag and Toe Hole Stocking, Reaching, 2018,” and in other large format color photographs shown in the exhibition, McKinley performs as The Priestess, simultaneously a symbol of a matriarchal past and a vision from the future, who inhabits surreal American landscapes such as desert dunes and glacial quarries.

These photographs, shot on film, embody a saturated color palette inspired by 1970s pulp and art house films. Part playful camp fantasy and part dark, puritanical allegory, these solo performances reimagine ritual practices of ancient matrilineal societies through outlandish satire.

Next year’s Hudson Valley Artists call will be available on the museum’s website in early February 2019. Artists who wish to receive notification of the artist’s call can subscribe to the Museum’s email list at

Previous Hudson Valley Artist Purchase Award winners include Richard Edelman, Deb Lucke, Nestor Madalengoita, Holly Hughes, Stephen Niccolls, Patrick Kelley, Adie Russell, Gilbert Plantinga, Thomas Sarrantonio, Francois Deschamps, Curt Belshe and Lise Prown, Charles Geiger, Barbara Leon, Elisa Pritzker and Amy Talluto.

About the artist
Mollie McKinley is an interdisciplinary artist based in New York City and the Hudson Valley. Her work includes photography, sculpture, performance, video and text. She studied photography and film/video at Bard College and is a 2018 Creative Glass Center of America Fellow.

McKinley’s first major New York solo exhibition, “Salt Priestess,” opened at Pioneer Works, Brooklyn in May 2017. Her work has been shown at venues throughout the eastern U.S., including in New York, the Hudson Valley, Miami, Philadelphia and New Jersey. Her work has also appeared on Clocktower Radio and in Vice, Fjords Review, Nylon Magazine, Vernissage TV Magazine, Animal New York, Apogee Literary Journal (Columbia University) and The Humble Arts Foundation.

About the Museum
Through its collections, exhibitions, and public programs, the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art, located at SUNY New Paltz, supports and enriches the academic programs at the college, presents a broad range of world art for study and enjoyment, and serves as a center for Hudson Valley arts and culture. The museum is gaining wide recognition as the premier public showplace for exhibition, education, and cultural scholarship about the Hudson Valley region’s art and artists from yesterday and today. With more than 9,000 square feet of exhibition space distributed over six galleries, The Dorsky Museum is one of the largest museums within the SUNY system. The Dorsky was officially dedicated on Oct. 20, 2001. Since then it has presented over one hundred exhibitions, including commissions, collection-based projects, and in-depth studies of contemporary artists including Robert Morris, Alice Neel, Judy Pfaff, Carolee Schneemann, and Ushio Shinohara, historic Woodstock artists Eugene Speicher and Charles Rosen, and Hudson Valley luminaries Russel Wright and Dick Polich.

Funding for Dorsky Museum exhibitions and programs is provided by the Friends of the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art and the State University of New York at New Paltz.

Museum Hours:
Wednesday–Sunday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Closed Mondays, Tuesdays, Holidays, and Intersessions.
For more information, visit The Dorsky Museum online or call (845) 257-3844.