Kelly McLaughlin grew up in Washington State where she received her BFA in Printmaking and Ceramics from Pacific Lutheran University in 2014. She completed a Post Baccalaureate program at the University of Alaska, Anchorage in 2017 and received her MFA in Ceramics from Ohio University in 2020. After graduate school, she was awarded a Summer Residency at the Archie Bray and then became a resident at Studio 740 in Helena, MT, where she still lives and makes work today.
Though agnostic herself, McLaughlin’s work is often influenced by her religious upbringing and ideas behind societal belief structures. As a figurative sculptor, she uses expression, color, realism, and a large scale for her animal and human forms. The physicality and responsive nature of her work is reflected within the other facets of her life including climbing, cooking, music, and world travel. Her work has been showcased all over the US and can be found in numerous private collections.