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Artist Bio

Melissa is an interdisciplinary artist working across collage, assemblage, installation and social engagement. Through a hybrid of mediums, her practice is dedicated to preserving and celebrating the histories of African and Caribbean diasporas within contemporary media.

 

Today, she expands upon an immersive body of work that evokes the fragility and diversity within the black community. Melissa’s work has been exhibited at The Biggs Museum of American Art and supported by residencies including ArtCrawl Harlem, Chrysalis Institute for Emerging Artists, and The Alliance of Artist Communities. She is currently a recipient of the Zea Mays Printmaking mentorship program. Melissa's work has been written about in several publications, including Black Enterprise, Forbes, Essence, and Refinery 29. She is currently attending the Maryland Institute College of Art pursuing her MFA. She serves as a Director of Creative Innovation & Ideation for sk.ArtSpace. Melissa shares her time between Brooklyn, NY and Baltimore, MD.

Artist Statement

As an interdisciplinary artist working across collage, assemblage, installation, and social engagement, I have reached a point in my practice where I am seeking out how my work exists within the greater context of the art world. Emphasizing the value of interdisciplinary works, my projects are currently centered around three themes: i) advocating for the overlooked labor of Black women activists, ii) examining Black identities and iii) redefining art as spiritual language. With this, I aim to ignite social memory and create spaces for public discourse centered around the appreciation of Black feminism.  Additionally, I want to further my path by redefining art as a spiritual language, one that is informed by written and oral archives, literature, and dialogical art. The spiritual connection I have with collage is palpable, almost as if I’m speaking in tongues and a medium that translates and communicates stories, authentic experiences, and the collective power from my own life and the journeys of women globally.