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Myrna Colley-Lee was born in 1941 at Hamlett, N.C. She completed her B.F.A. in art education from the Woman's College of the University of North Carolina (now The University of North Carolina at Greensboro) and studied scene painting and properties at Brooklyn College, N.Y. In 1980 she received her M.F.A. in scenic and costume design from Temple University, Philadelphia, Penn.

Colley-Lee's most recent costume design work was featured in the productions Relativity at the Black Rep, St. Louis, Mo., The Piano Lesson and Forest City at the Cleveland Playhouse, Ohio, and Wedding Band: A Love/Hate Story in Black and White for the Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Chicago, Ill. This year she will assist with the premiere of Till, a new work by Ifa Bayeza in conjunction with Rites & Reason Theatre at Brown University, Providence, R.I.

Other credits include the CableACE Award-winning video production of Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey into Night; the world premiere of the opera X: The Life and Times of Malcolm X composed by Anthony Davis and performed at the Walnut Street Theatre, Philadelphia, Penn.; and Mothers, commissioned by Bill Cosby and performed at Crossroads Theatre Company, New Brunswick, N.J.

In addition to her theater work, Colley-Lee has been the costume designer, art director, and set designer for film and television productions. Following the installation of her exhibition at the Mississippi Museum of Art in Jackson, she will begin work as the production designer for the independent film The Reprieve. She recently designed her first commercial interior for the Los Angeles-based movie production company, Revelations Entertainment, as well as two homes, one of which is currently under construction in the British Virgin Islands.

Outside design work Colley-Lee serves as a commissioner for the Mississippi Arts Commission and is on several boards, including the Charleston Arts and Revitalization Effort, Inc., a local civic arts organization; the Rock River Foundation, a philanthropic organization for the arts; the Mississippi State University Department of Art; and the Gertrude C. Ford Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Mississippi, University. She is a member of the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, D.C., and the Black Theatre Network, St. Louis, Mo. She has also held faculty or staff positions at Smith College, Northampton, Mass., the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival, Washington, D.C., and the Design and Management Institute of the National Arts Consortium, New York, N.Y.

GladRags: Sketches, Swatches and Costume Designs by Myrna Colley-Lee is organized by the Mississippi Museum of Art and supported with funds provided by the Museum's statewide Traveling Exhibition Endowment, a fund made possible through significant private contributions matched by the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

Mississippi State University Libraries
Mississippi State University Libraries
Mississippi State University
Mississippi State University

Myrna Colley-Lee