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Liza MacKinnon is a self-taught mixed-media artist and arts educator with 10+ years of experience in teaching, freelance graphic design and exhibited artwork.  Working in Lawrence, KS, she has shown regionally in KS and MO as well as NM, WA, CA, IL, SD and TX. Her work is in private and permanent collections around the US. Liza specializes in ½ scale 3d historic costumes made of paper, creating in-depth studies of women in history. 



I love the challenge of telling a story and sharing my values through the limited medium of historic costumes fashioned from paper. These sculptures contain layers of meaning and messages through the materials chosen. Whether my pieces speak of LGBTQA+ rights, our oligarchical military complex nation or illuminating astounding women from history; recycled books, maps, letters and photos merge to reveal complex stories and history.  Each dress provides a beautiful silhouette from a distance and then reveals covert details up close.

My paper costumes are a natural extension of lifetime spent illustrating, painting and making prints of historic garments.

These paper garments, which can take weeks to complete, are made relevant by the materials included.  I enjoy surprising the viewer, either with the trompe l’oeil of paper masquerading as fabric, or with thought provoking materials such as making Ophelia from Hamlet out of pages from the DSM IV or nudging the conversation by creating a Marie Antoinette made of 1040 tax forms and US currency. Although the parameters are limited, the possibilities are endless as I combine statements about my values with my obsession with historical clothing.

Paper garments now on offer at the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art Museum Store


The Phoenix Gallery in downtown Lawrence KS

Embroidered postcards available at Edition ONE Gallery on Canyon Road, Santa Fe, NM


Exhibition History

2023 Two-person Show, Edition ONE Gallery, Santa Fe, NM with Alexandra Eldridge

2023 Collaborative Show, Theatre Lawrence with Maria Martin and Loretta Schmidt

2023 Group Show, Lawrence Art Guild all Members Show at the Lawrence Arts Center

2023 Two-person Show, Women’s Work, Volland Store Gallery, Alma KS with Shin-hee Chin

2023 Group Show, Thread, Paper Dresses, Art Santa Fe, Santa Fe NM Convention Center

2022-2023 Two-person Show, Couture at the Chamber, Lawrence Chamber of Commerce

2022 Two-person show, Winter Poppies, S&S Artisan Pub and Coffeehouse, Lawrence, KS

2022 Solo Show, The Southwest meets the High Plains, Black Stag Brewery, Lawrence, KS

2022, 2023 Group Show, Lawrence Art Guild group show, Landmark Bank, Lawrence, KS

2022-2024 Group Show, Lawrence Public Library Staff Spring Exhibit, Lawrence, KS

2022 Solo Show, Thread Paper Dresses, Downtown Subscription, Santa Fe, NM

2022 Two-person Show, Dance of a Small Planet, JFA Gallery, Jemez Springs, NM
with Jim Forcier-Call

2022 Three-Person Show, The View from Here, Lincoln Arts Center, Lincoln, KS
with Marty Olsen & Maria Martin

2022 Solo Show, Fashioned from Paper, Grassroots Art Center, Lucas KS

2022 Solo Show, Collected Stories, Theatre Lawrence, Lawrence KS

2021 Two-Person Show, Words with Wings, Jemez Fine Arts Gallery, Jemez Springs, NM

2021 Juried Group Show, Kansas 2021, Topeka Art Guild Gallery, Topeka, KS, First Prize

2021 Juried Group Show, Boundaries, Women Made Gallery, Chicago, IL

2021-2022 Juried Group Show, Bound and Unbound IV, University Libraries,
University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD

2021 Solo Show, A Kansas Childhood, Lawrence Public Library, Lawrence KS

2021 Juried Group Show, Women in Art 2021, Las Lagunas Art Gallery, Laguna, CA

2021 Juried Group Show, Her Art, Their Art, InterUrban Art House, Overland Park, KS

2020 Group Show, Jones Art Gallery, Kansas City, MO

2020-2022 Group Show, 25-Year Retrospective, Grassroots Arts Center, Lucas, KS

2019-2022 Group Shows, Holiday Art Fair, Cider Gallery, Lawrence, KS

2019 Solo Show, Formidable Women, Lawrence Percolator, Lawrence, KS

2019-2023 Group Shows, Lawrence Art Guild group show, Cider Art Gallery Lawrence, KS

2018 Solo Exhibition, Blooming Figures, North Park Center, Dallas, TX

2017 Two-Person Show, Backstage at the Globe, Jemez Fine Arts Gallery, Jemez Springs, NM
with Jim Forcier-Call

2008-2024 Group Shows, Bizarre Bazaar, Lawrence Arts Center, Lawrence, KS

2012-2024 Group Shows, Annual Benefit Auction, Lawrence Arts Center, Lawrence, KS

2010-2021 Group Shows, The Love Show, Lawrence Percolator, Lawrence, KS

2009-2015 various art fairs and galleries throughout Kansas and Missouri including the LAG 1109 Gallery, Lawrence Public Library, Art in the Park, Holiday Art Fair, Troost Days, Topeka First Friday Artwalk, Lawrence Art Walk, Parisol Arts, Mound City Festival, Second Saturdays, etc.



WISC Fellow 2024, Santa Fe, NM

Mission Street Arts 2025, Jemez Springs, NM

Public Commissions

2021 Dolly Parton – Lawrence Public Library

2018 Blooming Figures Six sculptures for the Dallas North Park Center, now owned by the
Dallas Public Library


Arts Educator

Paper and Friends series held at my studio, 721 E 9th St. 2024

Bookbinding Instructor for the Lawrence Arts Center 2010-2018

Various mixed media classes and workshops for adults, teens and children,
Lawrence Arts Center 2010-2018

Various mixed media workshops for adults, Lawrence Public Library 2011-2022


Public Artist

Workshop and Artist Talk, Grassroots Art Center, 2022

Workshops, Jemez Springs Public Library 2021, 2022

Workshop and Artist Talk, Lawrence Percolator 2019

Workshop and Artist Talk, Dallas Area Fiber Artists Guild 2018

Featured Artist, Phoenix Gallery January Final Fridays 2013-2019

Demonstrating Artist, Lawrence Public Library festivals 2012-2014

Demonstrating Artist, University of Kansas Avenue of the Arts 2011

Artist Talk, Lawrence Art Guild 2010


Non-profit Collaboration

Member of Yarn it Forward, part of the East Ninth Street Artist Project Grant 2019-2020

Member of the organizing committee for Bizarre Bazaar 2011-2023


Giving to the Community

Artwork donation to the NM Library Foundation 2022

Artwork donation to the Lawrence Public Library’s Kid’s Action Committee 2022, 2023, 2024

Artwork donation to the Jemez Springs Public Library, 2021

Artwork proceeds donation to the Percolator Art Space 2021

Artwork donations to the Bodhi Manda Zen Center Benefit Auction 2022, 2021

Artwork donations to the Lawrence Yarn it Forward 2020

Artwork donations to the Lawrence Festival of Trees 2017

Artwork donations to the Lawrence Arts Center Benefit Auction 2012-2023

Public Arts and Crafts tables for children for the South Mass Arts Guild

Public Earth Day Arts and Crafts tables for the Lawrence Arts Guild

Public Valentine’s making parties 2008-2013

Various fundraisers for Central Junior High School and Lawrence High School 2007-2013

Volunteer benefit event coordinator Divas and Gents Lawrence Arts Center 2008



Lawrence Magazine 2022, 2017

The Makers Story, New Zealand magazine 2021

Lawrence Journal World 2021, 2016, 2015, 2010 June 2012



  • Lawrence Art Guild

  • Santa Fe Gallery Association

  • Santa Fe Arts Club

  • Topeka Arts Guild

  • John Talleur Printmaking Studio

  • IATSE Theatrical Wardrobe Union-Seattle

  • Graphic Artist Guild


Recent Updates & Headlines


Summer 2022

Lawrence Magazine

Images on pages 7, 40 and 42 Write up in the Lawrence Magazine.

Paper and cotton might not seem like the likely recipe for stitching together a dress, but for
this artist it is exactly the two things she needs.

Artist feature - Liza MacKinnon

Issue Two  2021

June 2021

Art exhibit quietly maps the achievements of Kansas women who ‘lived good lives’

Lawrence Magazine

Click to pages 14/15 and 30/31. Write up in the Lawrence Magazine.

Lawrence Magazine 2017.PNG

Summer 2017



Winter 2016

Lawrence Journal World Article

Percolator Love Show 2016



How do I get started ordering a paper garment?

Please send me an email: to start the conversation. I have created an easy pictured filled form that will help organize your ideas. For hanging garments, think about what pattern you like (browse instagram: @liza.mackinnon), then what materials you'd like to incorporate. We can collaborate and make a unique piece just for you. I do not recreate  artwork, but can incorporate elements you admire from existing works.

How long does it take to make a paper garment?

It all depends on the size and customizations! The actual time in production (after research and materials acquisition) would be two days for a doll-sized dress, 1 week for toddler-sized dress and two-three weeks for a 3 foot tall 3d dress. Paper fascinators would be 1 week, large scale sunflowers take two-three weeks.  These are estimates and actual time to complete will be calculated based on current orders.


Can you ship your paper garments?

Yes, for all flat, wall hanging garments and fascinators, I can ship within the US for less than $50 on USPS. The three foot 3d dresses could run up to $400 to ship and are generally purchased locally (Lawrence, KS) or in NM during my annual visit.


Can your paper garments be worn?

No, these pieces are purely sculptural, to be enjoyed as an object d'art.


Can you make a paper garment out of anything?

Almost! I've printed copies of family photos, cut up books, used sheet music and of course maps. Some paper sources are so old and fragile that I can not incorporate, but most paper ephemera can be used in design of paper garments.

What do your paper garments cost?

2023 prices are toddler - $200 and doll - $160. Large-scale garments are priced individually.

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