“I am a media artist who works across modes of communication, from video and photographic images to sound, and sculpture. My work begins in the institutions that tell the tales of exploration and describe distant lands– museums, libraries, and the media. I consider each of these and their roles and contrast them with heuristic experiential modes of acquiring knowledge. It then expands out into the field where I reimagine and represent collected material, mimicking the presentation strategies of these institutions for new representations of place and exploration. 

Places are at once stable and mutable. There is a false sense that place is unchanging or is completely knowable. I examine how location is experienced across time, the rediscovery of the known, and the layered relationship between the main characters: place and explorer. The historic explorer is a troubled character at best. I am the descendant of one. My grandfather sailed the South Pacific for the American Museum of Natural History. His story, his flaws, and those of explorers before and after are in the work as well. But I remain drawn to the explorer and their singular focus on frontiers in spite of the risk, all for the possibility that they could experience something authentic.”

-McLean Fahnestock


About McLean:

McLean Fahnestock seeks out footage, images, and items that expand our understanding of place and carry the character of exploration. McLean received a BFA from Middle Tennessee State University and MFA from California State University Long Beach. Her work has been exhibited and screened across the United States and Internationally at institutions such as the Aurora Picture Show and Menil Collection, Houston, Frist Art Museum, Nashville, Black Mountain College Re{Happening}, North Carolina, Technisches Museum Wien, Vienna, Austria, The California Science Museum, Los Angeles, The British Library, London, and MOCA Hiroshima, Japan. Her work has been selected for Off the Screen at the 57th Ann Arbor Film Festival. 

McLean is an Assistant Professor at Austin Peay University in Clarksville, TN and keeps her studio in Nashville, TN.

More on McLean:

Mineral House Media’s digital residency program is series of online “takeovers.” Each selected artist is given full control of the Mineral House Media Instagram feed for 3 weeks. Residents complete an interview to be published at the close of their designated month. It is a great way to experiment, showcase your practice in a new way, and develop a new following. We still have openings for 2019, so Apply Here!

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