92 Plymouth Street, 4
Jes Fan is deeply invested in object-making, with a particular investment in glass as a transformative material. Fan has been suspending melanin in glass globules that act as imaginary organs, intimately scaled to the body. It grants the melanin a life of its own, leaving us to deliberate how tangible this simple pigment is, and what an outsized role in racial identity—and thus racial construction, colorism, and racism—it accommodates. One of the most pertinent questions in Fan’s work is the possibility of kinship outside biology, which was explored in a previous project Mother is a Woman (2018), a custom beauty cream infused with estrogen from the artists mother’s urine. With this cream, Fan asked if femininity and maternalism was communicable through a commercial product. Fan is a recipient of many awards such as the Jerome Hill Fellowship, Joan Mitchell Painters and Sculptors Grant, and a Van Lier Fellowship.
Watch Infectious Beauty Jes Fan at art21: https://art21.org/watch/new-york-close-up/jes-fan-infectious-beauty/
About Smack Mellon
Smack Mellon is a nonprofit arts organization located in DUMBO, Brooklyn. Smack Mellon’s mission is to nurture and support emerging, under-recognized mid-career and women artists in the creation and exhibition of new work, by providing exhibition opportunities, studio workspace, and access to equipment and technical assistance for the realization of ambitious projects. We see ourselves as a vehicle whereby under-represented artists can create, explore and exhibit their creative ideas outside the concerns of the commercial art world, offering many artists the exposure and recognition they deserve.