Due to the pandemic, the Weyland Art Gallery is not open for visitors. We would, however, like to share with you the current exhibit. Please enjoy your "virtual" visit to our gallery.
Artist Melissa Airy
September 28 - October 30
The journey of coming home is one that is entirely familiar yet simultaneously reveals a newfound sense of purpose, exposes moments of growth and challenges one’s understanding of self. Home can be experienced as a physical location in which pivotal moments in development have occurred, a state of being where one is deeply connected to one’s self or aligning with communities centering on commonalities in belief systems or past histories. This process of journeying home is entirely cyclical in that we continue to go back to this place of familiarity, yet within each expedition, we are changed by the events and occurrences along the way. The traveler is required to conduct an examination of expectations, surrender to what is already known, and find the willingness to take up the journey that is destined ahead. Navigating the ephemerality of the emotional, spiritual and physical journey leads the traveler to a destination that although may be familiar, reflects the transformation of the voyager who found their way home.
Melissa Airy is an Iowa native where she received her BFA in Performance Art and BA in Art Education from the University of Northern Iowa in 2014. Melissa currently holds the position of Lecturer of Art at the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point. Previously, Melissa taught all levels of art education before returning to graduate school. At the University of Iowa, Melissa received her MFA in 2020 with a major emphasis in Intermedia Art and a secondary emphasis in Sculpture.
Through her artistic research and practice, Melissa strives to understand and translate religious experiences to a secular world. With an emphasis on pilgrimage, she reflects on both inward and outward spiritual journeys through mental and physical spaces. Melissa's work is a visual representation of her personal experiences as a sojourner to sacred landscapes in an attempt to understand the profound sense of purpose and awakening that was encountered along the way. Most prominently Melissa has embarked on the Camino de Santiago, a 500-mile ancient pilgrimage trail across Spain, as both a durational performance and as field research. As a deeply personal practice, Melissa uses performance art, video, and installation as avenues to understand, express and share the experiences she had while journeying. Melissa has performed and exhibited her work throughout the United States.
Click the photo to view a video titled, "Breaking My Silence"