Melissa Pokorny’s research focuses on the sense of place, and its role in structuring memory and identity. Her large-scale sculptures, mixed media tableaus, and installations incorporate fragmented images of landscape and nature that highlight contested spaces, edges and boundaries between the natural world and our presence in it.
Pokorny plans to extensively photograph and map the fifty-acre prairie at Ragdale. As in past residencies in Wyoming and Iceland, she’ll be using this immersive experience to create sculptural situations that initiate a perception of collapsing or telescoping boundaries between temporal, locational, cultural, and physical relationships.
Pokorny is an Associate Professor in the School of Art + Design at the University of Illinois, in Urbana Champaign. She received an MFA from the University of California, Davis. She’s been the recipient of numerous awards and residencies–including an Illinois Arts Council Individual Artists Grant and the Effroymson Contemporary Art Fellowship. She lives with her family in Urbana, IL.