Jeffrey Meris is the 2022 Arison Artadia Awardee.
Jeffrey Meris (b. 1991, Haiti) is an artist who earned an AA in Arts and Crafts from the University of The Bahamas in 2012, a BFA in Sculpture from the Tyler School of Art in 2015, and an MFA in Visual Arts from Columbia University in 2019. Meris is a Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture 2019 alum, a NXTHVN 2020 studio fellow and currently a Sharpe Walentas Studio fellow 2021.
Conjured in the brain, the first images of healing that come to mind are often of light, purity, or the sublime. In my most recent body of work, I transition between the trauma of the colonial project in my sculptures to healing and restoring those wounds in my paintings. What would healing centuries of anti-blackness, xenophobia, homophobia, and other oppressions look like? I use the rust of oxidized steel calloused on my sculptures to reveal the messiness that lays hand in hand with the divinity in the regeneration process.
“Jeffrey Meris draws from personal and cultural histories to inform the basis of his interdisciplinary work through a materially forward practice that considers relational geographies, care, and healing,” Juror Susanna Temkin remarked.