Kathy O'Dell

Kathy O'Dell

Arts Writer

Kathy O'Dell is Associate Professor of Visual Arts Emerita, UMBC; Chair of the Maryland Public Art Commission; and on the team implementing the Catonsville Arts District Public Art Vision. An art historian and critic, she is author of the book Contract with the Skin: Masochism, Performance Art, and the 1970s and a founding editor of Link: A Critical Journal on the Arts in Baltimore and the World, published 1996-2005.

Stories by Kathy O'Dell
On Touching COR-TEN, One Percent for the Arts, and the Effort to Label and Preserve its Legacy

Here, before us at the school, are stripped-down, geometricized versions of four individual caterpillars, poised at different moments in their movements—stretching upward toward the sky, looking ahead, or reaching toward the ground, as if scouting for fallen leaves on the brick foundation...

Two Community Organizers Were Immortalized in a Mural that Ended up on the Front Page of the New York Times as an Illustration for Baltimore's Clap-Back to Donald Trump

It takes a minute to wrench myself out of the cosmic nerve center of this 40-foot wide, 20-foot-tall mural, which Santos created in 2011, and move on to clues and cues that will help piece together the narratives that figurative murals promise to offer up... So, who are these women?

The Saga of José Martí and the Anti-Communist Plastic Surgeon who Brought Him to Baltimore, along with Spanish-Language Facebook Drama and International Dirt

In her new column, Maryland Public Art Commission Chair Kathy O'Dell deep-dives into the little-known histories behind Baltimore's oft-overlooked public art treasures. First up is Cuban sculptor Teodoro Ramos Blanco's bust of rebel and intellectual José Martí.