Michael Kelley was born in 1952 in Wayne, Michigan, and died in Los Angeles in January 2012. He was educated at the University of Michigan and at the California Institute of the Arts, where he studied under artist John Baldessari. He often experimented with various media, including textiles, collage, performance video, and found objects. He also collaborated with the artists Paul McCarthy and Tony Oursler. One of his most often revisited themes was the issue of social boundaries. The Whitney Museum of American Art held a retrospective of his work 1997 retrospective of his work.