Studio M: Creature Comforts by Staci Marie Leech Cornell

Massillon Museum Studio M to Exhibit Creature Comforts

Studio M in the Massillon Museum’s Fred F. Silk Community Room will feature artwork by Staci Marie Leech-Cornell, Creature Comforts, from September 30 through November 13, 2016. The exhibition may be seen during regular Museum hours, Tuesday through Saturday 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday 2:00 to 5:00 pm. A reception for the artist will be held Saturday, October 15, 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.  A members' reception precedes the public event at 6:00 p.m.

Fine artist and illustrator Staci Marie Leech-Cornell was raised in Greenbrier County, West Virginia, where she grew to love her family’s collections of ceramic birds and knickknacks. That love is now expressed through her drawings, paper works, and gouache paintings. Her past and present fascination with birds and the whimsy of wildlife are both deeply rooted in family tradition.

An avid researcher, she spends hours at her home in Nitro, West Virginia, looking through books and internet sites learning about birds, wildlife, nature, and fashion. 

Creature Comforts, she says, are things considered to be material comforts that contribute to physical ease and well-being, like good food and housing. The exhibition depicts these comforts using creatures, rather than humans. “It examines ‘creature’ comforts such as bird baths featuring birds in elegant bathtubs, providing the audience glimpses into the birdhouses that surround us and indulges—with the creatures sometimes enjoying guilty pleasures,” Leech-Cornell says. Her works range in size with the largest being a two-dimensional life-size collage/mixed media piece. They are created with a variety of techniques:  ink, watercolor, gouache, and collage.

“The gentle, inquisitive, profiled stance of the creatures is a staple in my works.” Leech-Cornell said. “With a sophistication of style and pops of color ranging from traditional to eclectic, each creature pulls its personality together and is ready for its audience.”

Leech-Cornell holds both a Bachelor of Fine Arts and a Master of Fine Arts degree with emphasis in sculpture from Marshall University. Her artwork has been seen in solo and small group shows Florida, Ohio, and West Virginia. It has frequently been selected for juried exhibitions in Tamarack’s David L. Dickirson Fine Arts Gallery, Beckley, West Virginia. In Stark County, Ohio, her artwork has previously appeared in the 2010 invitational exhibition, Constellations of Women, at Anderson Creative Studio and Gallery, Canton.

During a reception for the artist on Saturday, October 15, 7:00 to 9:00 p.m., guests will be able to meet the artist, see her work, and enjoy refreshments. They will also be invited to attend the openings of the Stark County Artists Exhibition and the Art 360°: Contemporary Art Hatching across Ohio exhibitions.  Other exhibitions on view will be Paul Brown and the Massillon Tiger Swing Band, It’s Been Awhile!, Echo: The Early History of Sound Recording, and The Immel Circus.

Studio M enhances the collaboration between the Museum and the community by showcasing the artistic talents of local, regional, and national artists. The series of five-week shows will continue throughout the year, selected by jurors from proposals submitted by artists. Brochures containing guidelines and an application are available by calling the Massillon Museum at 330-833-4061 or visiting

The Massillon Museum receives operating support from the Ohio Arts Council and ArtsinStark.The Massillon Museum is located at 121 Lincoln Way East (Ohio Route 172) in the heart of downtown Massillon.  A visit to the Massillon Museum is always free.

Media Contacts:

Alexandra Nicholis Coon, Massillon Museum Executive Director  -  330-833-4061 x111

Emily Vigil, Studio M Coordinator  -

Margy Vogt, Massillon Museum PR Coordinator 

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