Chelsea Cates

Class of 2004
Major/Minor: Art History

An art history major, Chelsea Cates ‘04 didn’t start creating her own works of art until her senior year. Since then, she’s earned an M.F.A. in photography from Parsons School of Design in New York City and displayed her work in New York, Delaware, and even at Washington College.

Many of her pieces are printed on cotton and feature patterns created from disturbing images she cuts up and splices together to make aesthetically pleasing home furnishings. Often politically motivated, one of Chelsea’s recent works, inspired by American apathy to and disengagement from the war in Iraq, was designed to bring the war home.

Chelsea credits her liberal arts background for a well-rounded education that helps her develop a context for her work.

“Anyone can be technically gifted, but the art has to mean something,” Chelsea said. “I think the liberal arts nature of the school really helps with that.”

“What Does It Mean?” Read Chelsea’s explanation (PDF).