Mel Chin

Recognized as an important artist of our time, Chin’s work evades easy classification. It is analytical and poetic; conjoining cross-cultural aesthetics with complex ideas. Found in unlikely places, such as destroyed homes, toxic landfills, and prime-time television, his investigations explore our natural and social ecologies and how art can provoke greater social awareness and responsibility. Unconventional and politically engaged, his collaborative projects challenge the idea of the solitary artist as the exclusive creative force.

In 1993, for Eco-Tec International, he organized a multi-disciplinary team to assess an abandoned asbestos mine and former factory in Corsica, France. He continues to develop long-term works such as Revival Field (1989-ongoing), a project that has been a pioneer in the field of "green remediation." A 10th anniversary implementation in Stuttgart, Germany featured dramatic advancements in the use of plants to remove toxic, heavy metals from the soil. These projects are consistent with a conceptual philosophy, which emphasizes the practice of art to include sculpting and bridging the natural and social ecology. Through his current project, Operation Paydirt/Fundred Dollar Bill Project, Chin involves scientists, health experts, planners, educators and millions of students nationwide, creatively building support for an end to childhood lead poisoning.

Chin’s work was documented in the popular PBS program, Art of the 21st Century. Chin has received numerous awards and grants from organizations such as the National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council for the Arts, Art Matters, Creative Capital, and the Penny McCall, Pollock/Krasner, Joan Mitchell, Rockefeller and Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundations, among others.