Saturday, March 19 @ 5-6pm
Location: Memorial Union, Shannon Hall, Free with valid WISC ID
Mel Chin is a conceptual, visual artist. The Lifetime Achievement in Printmaking Award is awarded annually to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the professional development of printmaking as a fine art. This year’s Awards Committee expands on the definition of “the print” and recognizes Mel Chin’s lifetime contribution to community action through printed matter in collaborative projects such as Operation Paydirt/Fundred Dollar Bill Project. Historically, printmaking has contributed to political, cultural and social circumstances in the same way that themes of Chin’s artwork is carried out through an interdisciplinary approach and the expansion of print media.
Mel Chin received a B.A. (1975) from the Peabody College of Vanderbilt University. He has served as a visiting professor or fellow at numerous institutions. Chin is a 2019 MacArthur Genius Fellow and the recipient of awards including the Pollock/Krasner, Joan Mitchell, Rockefeller, and Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundations, among others. Chin’s work was documented in the PBS program, Art of the 21st Century. He is known for the broad range of approaches in his art, including works that require multi-disciplinary, collaborative teamwork and works that conjoin cross-cultural aesthetics with complex ideas. Chin also insinuates art into unlikely places, including destroyed homes, toxic landfills, and even popular television, investigating how art can provoke greater social awareness and responsibility. He developed Revival Field (1989-ongoing), a project that has been a pioneer in the field of “green remediation,” the use of plants to remove toxic, heavy metals from the soil. From 1995-1998 he formed the collective, the GALA Committee, that produced In the Name of the Place, a conceptual public art project conducted on American prime-time television. In KNOWMAD, Chin worked with software engineers to create a video game based on rug patterns of nomadic people facing cultural disappearance. His film, 9-11/9-11, a hand-drawn, 24-minute, joint Chilean/USA Production, won the prestigious Pedro Sienna Award, for Best Animation, National Council for the Arts and Cultures, Chile, in 2007. Chin also promotes “works of art” that have the ultimate effect of benefiting science, as in Revival Field, and in the recent Operation Paydirt/Fundred Dollar Bill Project, an attempt to make New Orleans a lead-safe city (see www.fundred.org.) In conjunction with MMOCA solo exhibition, Mel Chin: There’s Something Happening Here and Operation Paydirt/Fundred Dollar Bill Project. Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, 227 State Street, Madison, March 5 – July 31, Friday, Saturday, Sunday 12-6pm.