Melissa Yes has been appointed assistant professor of art in The University of Alabama’s Department of Art and Art History. She will begin the new position on August 16, 2022, teaching courses in digital media.
Yes is an intermedia artist working primarily in video and installation art. Her studio practice considers American myths and attitudes, reflecting and processing them as objects, moving images, and constructed environments, as she describes, “each of these fraught with their relationship to our cultural economy’s ‘business as usual.’” Her work often uses subtle humor as a form of critique, directed both outwardly and inwardly. Her most sincere gestures extend towards gathering and listening, often working collaboratively and creating contexts for engaged participation.
Yes is currently developing a collaborative project, Finches, which uses Harper Lee’s character, Atticus Finch, as an opening to conversations about the complicated figures—the “Finches”—in our personal and civic life. The project explores the tension created when communities are conflicted about the things they love. Anchored in the state of Alabama, Finches gathers insight about how these tensions manifest in the American South, and how they speak to the current moment in our nation. Yes and her collaborators will present a performance at the Gadsden Museum of Art on Saturday, August 20, 2022 from 2-4 p.m. The 2022 presentation of Finches is supported by 1504, the Alabama State Council on the Arts, the Gadsden Museum Foundation, and The Ohio State University.
Yes received an MFA from The Ohio State University in 2017, then returned to her home state of Alabama and co-founded Vinegar, a nonprofit contemporary art space in Birmingham. She is the recipient of an Alabama State Council on the Arts Media/Photography Fellowship and has received grants for research and scholarship from The Ohio State University.
Yes has presented solo exhibitions at the Gadsden (Alabama) Museum of Art, Southern Exposure Project Space in St. Augustine, FL; C for Courtside in Knoxville, TN; Gallery Vox in Tarrant, Alabama, and Sean Christopher Gallery in Columbus, OH. Her work has been included in the 2020 SECAC Juried Exhibition (Richmond, VA), 2020 Alabama Repertory Dance Theatre, Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art, Historic Jacinto Aleix House, New Orleans; Walnut Gallery, Gadsden; among many others.
For more information about the programs in the UA Department of Art and Art History, go to this page or contact the department at (205) 348-5967.