‘Kiss me I’m vaxxed’: Art student launches start-up while in lockdown

28 September 2021

Making an impact while being kept apart  

We talk to Art Curating student Chloe Morrissey, the founder of ‘Kiss me I’m Vaccinated.’, on her creative journey with the campaign, and her passion for art curation and social causes.

A girl (face not shown), wearing a white T-shirt that has the sentence 'Kiss me I'm vaccianted' in pink written on it

'Kiss me I'm vaccinated' T-shirt, image from @kissmeimvaxxed on Instagram

As Australia grapples with the vaccine rollout amid a nation-wide coronavirus outbreak, our Master of Art Curating student Chloe Morrissey, decided to put her learnings for a timely cause.

“I started a T-Shirt campaign called “Kiss me I’m vaccinated.” with three of my friends, the aim is to bring people together again and encourage others to play their part in the vaccination rollout.”

Among the mixed messaging and confusing public debate, this cheeky spin of an important message is simply refreshing. Their tagline ‘let's hug & kiss our friends again’ says plenty.

Better yet, 20% of the proceeds will be donated to Lifeline, to help raise funds and awareness to the mental health crisis exacerbated by the pandemic.

We’ve been kept apart for long enough, now it’s time to bind together, spark conversations and spur on some action
Chloe Morrissey, founder of ‘Kiss me I’m vaccinated.’

From visual arts to art curating

Chloe Mossissey sitting in her study space, surrounded by paintings and plants

Chloe Morrissey, Master of Art Curating

For Chloe, following up her undergraduate degree from Sydney College of the Arts, with a postgraduate course was the natural next step. Chloe enjoyed her visual arts degree so much that she felt that there was a lot more she could learn before entering the workforce.

“In my undergraduate, the focus was mainly on producing artworks as a practising artist and I felt I could really harness the insights I developed as an artist and apply them to a curator’s perspective,” she says. “This degree particularly appealed to me because it is a supplement and complementary to what I already know.”

The practicality of the postgraduate degree was a major differentiation point for Chloe.

Having these subjects delivered to you as if we were already working in the field and providing insights into the machinations of museums or other cultural institutions through internships or guest speakers is something that I didn’t have in my undergraduate course.
Chloe Morrissey, Master of Art Curating

The combination also perfectly ties in with Chloe’s dream job. 

“I want to work in the visual arts sector in an curating role, specifically in a role that directly engages with contemporary Australian art, I am interested in the ways it delves into the various themes shaping the Australian psyche and I think contemporary Australian art is the ‘rising star’ within the broader art market.”

The degree’s internship opportunities in partnerships with organisations such as the Art Gallery of NSW is something she especially looks forward to.

Launching a start-up in lockdown

Reflecting on her journey with the ‘Kiss me I’m vaccinated.’ campaign, Chloe  was able to apply her learnings from the classroom into the real world in both a creative and business sense.

“I think particularly understanding how an object, in this case a T-Shirt, has the ability to convey deeper or conceptual messages, and how you can present these objects to an audience in a way that will resonate with them.”

Along the way, she also found surprising skills she acquired during the degree that she didn’t think would be useful at first. “It taught me how to work in a collaborative environment, which has been extremely useful in this process, as I have had to work closely with my team, our product suppliers, and the public.”

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