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Laurie Keller, Story Teller: Illustrations for Snory Fellers


Ernest and Marjorie Cooper Gallery

Nationally known illustrator/author and Muskegon native Laurie Quail Keller shares her whimsical, wacky, and funny illustrations from her best-selling tales with Museum visitors this spring. Laurie Keller, Story Teller was, organized by the MMA, shows the creative process of Keller’s zany books, from beginning ideas and illustrations to final publication. The illustrations featured in the exhibition can be found in her fan-favorite books: Arnie the Doughnut, Grandpa Gazillion’s Number Yard, Do Unto Otters, The Scrambled States of America, and more.  

As a child, Laurie Keller loved drawing and writing but didn’t realize then that she could grow up to become an author or illustrator. Laurie considered majoring in education or dance in college after graduating from Mona Shores High School, but enrolled at Kendall College of Art and Design after she became inspired by a senior art exhibit she saw there. Upon graduation, she took a job as an illustrator with Hallmark Cards in Kansas City, Missouri.

She wrote her first story, The Scrambled States of America, while she was in Kansas City and brought it to New York City to try to find an interested publisher. She moved to New York and, shortly after, received a call from Christy Ottaviano at Henry Holt and Company telling her that they wanted to publish her book. Ottaviano and Keller hit it off right away and have continued to work together on all of the artist’s books. Laurie loved living in New York City, but has moved back to her beloved “Mitten State” where she now lives, writes and illustrates at her lakeshore cottage in North Muskegon.
See more about Laurie Keller at

The exhibition is sponsored by Art Ally for Contemporary Art Alcoa Foundation. Additional support is provided by the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs.


March 7, 5:30 pm
Opening Reception, Lecture, and Book Signing

March 7 through May 26
Tour Your Class to Win

Teachers: Tour the exhibition with your students to be entered to win a special visit from Laurie Keller to your classroom. Each student in the winning class will also receive a copy of her book Do Unto Otters. To schedule a tour, please contact Cathy at 231.720.2587.

March 9, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Meet the Artist on Arnie the Doughnut Super Saturday

Thursdays, April 18 – May 23, 1:00-3:00 pm
Open Tours

Drop in and tour the exhibition with Museum docents. This Free Thursday program is sponsored by MMA Education Partner Alcoa Foundation/Howmet.

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