Melissa Stern is an artist and journalist living in NYC. Her traveling museum show, The Talking Cure, opens at the Weissman Museum in Minneapolis in August.
Melissa has worked in sculpture, photography and drawing for over twenty years, exhibiting throughout the US as well as Europe and Asia. Her work is featured in a number of prominent corporate and museum collections including News Corporation, JP Morgan, The Arkansas Art Center, the American Museum of Ceramic Art and the Kohler Corporation, where she was an artist-in-residence.
With a background in anthropology, Melissa’s work reflects both non-Western and outsider-art influences. Her drawings, collages, and figurative sculptures are richly drawn and deeply layered, with quirky, often dark humor.
“I work like a handyman cobbling together drawings and sculptures from elements found, borrowed, and imagined. I use a wide range of materials from encaustic to clay, pastel to steel. The drawings and sculptures, often made in tandem, resonate with one another, the ideas in one reinforcing the themes of the other. All of my pieces share a thematic thread. Childlike and goofy my figures live in a dream world, cower in relationships or stand tall in the face of adversity. They are at once dark and funny, expressive of the absurd world around them.”
Stern serves as a contributing writer for Hyperallergic, the Brooklyn-based digital arts publication, working at the intersection of the arts, culture, and politics. She has covered major exhibitions on assignment throughout the world. She served earlier as the principle art critic for The New York Press. She is a past Board Director of The Children’s Museum of the Arts in NYC, Watershed Center in Maine and curator of the Human Rights Film Festival from 2008-2015.