Melanie Crean is an artist, educator and filmmaker whose work explores how systems of power are represented in media, culture and technology. She uses site specific performance to research and mitigate the impact that social systems of control, such as capitalism and criminal justice, have on people and their surrounding environment. Her recent work focuses on how cultural archetypes such as the hero and the criminal are conceived, and how new forms of narrative can be used to equitably shift relationships of power.
Crean is an Assistant Professor at Parsons School of Design, where she teaches courses on emerging media, social engagement and visual culture. She has worked with moving image in a variety of capacities and genre, including directing the production studio at the arts non-profit Eyebeam; managing animation, motion capture and speech recognition teams at MTV Digital Television Lab; and producing documentaries in Nepal and India on the effects of women trafficking. She has received commissions from Art in General, Bronx Arts Council & Rhizome; fellowships from Creative Capital, Franklin Furnace, Jerome Foundation, Harvestworks, NYFA & NYSCA; and participated in exhibitions with Creative Time, Performa 11, Southern Exposure and No Longer Empty.