White Columns presents the first ever exhibition dedicated to the work of Rhoda Kellogg (1898-1987.) The exhibition has been organised by the New York-based artist Brian Belott.
Rhoda Kellogg was a psychologist and early-childhood educator. Over the course of her lifetime Kellogg collected more than two million drawings by children between the ages of two and eight. In 2017 Belott staged ‘Dr. Kid President Jr.’ an expansive installation that juxtaposed his own work alongside drawings from Kellogg’s collection of children’s art. Kellogg’s own work – produced during the last decade of her life, when she was in her 70s and 80s – has never been exhibited before. The exhibition includes collages and mixed-media drawings, alongside her designs for children’s furniture and a selection of her hand-written exhibition signage.
“Rhoda Kellogg (1898-1987) is an American hero who dedicated her life to a field of study that remains severely underappreciated some forty years later: early childhood art. Kellogg showed the highest regard for an age group who normally are the first to be ushered off a sinking boat, but once upon dry land are the first to be shuffled out of sight, out of the way so that the adult world can continue with its own agenda. Not only was caring for very young children considered to be unskilled “women’s work,” children’s abstract scribbles were the least concerning aspect of their development. I believe it is because Rhoda invested in this particularly undervalued field that her life’s efforts have been culturally put in a deep freeze.