MARISA WILLIAMSON is a multimedia artist based in Newark, NJ. She has created site-specific works at and in collaboration with the University of Virginia, Mural Arts Philadelphia, Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, Storm King Art Center, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Her videos, performances, and installations have been exhibited internationally. She received her B.A. from Harvard University and her M.F.A. from CalArts. She was a participant in the Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture in 2012 and the Whitney Museum’s Independent Study Program in 2014-2015.
She has taught at the Pratt Institute, the Brooklyn Museum, and Rutgers University’s Mason Gross School of the Arts. She is currently on the faculty at the Hartford Art School at the University of Hartford.
My projects explore and interpret through performance, video, objects and images, the ways that soft technologies in conjunction with hard technologies, facilitate the rendering and surrendering of the body over time. My work maps the past onto geographies of the present to interrogate the material and immaterial possibilities of inheritance, memory, and storytelling.
The work is rooted in questions of authority, parafiction, freedom and its opposite(s), race, gender, labor, and love through an historical lens. It addresses these interests as they pertain to my life: a modern life existing as it does as a consequence of known and unknown literal and figurative ancestors.
The fourth wall; the threshold between the audience and the performance, the work and the world, the onlooking crowd and the troublesome ‘other’, across which mystical mimetic relationships occur—is of ongoing interest. The work works on me as I hope it works on viewers; providing insight not only into how history is understood, but how it is felt.