First Name


Last Name





Melissa Sclafani (she/they) researches modes of oppression – specifically white supremacy and cisheteropatriarchy through its symbols, sites, and the built environment, and uses their practice as a tool of deconstruction. Sclafani’s work is realized through sculpture, installation, and performance, often integrating all three. They use their background in traditional sculpture techniques, journalism, and gender studies to interrogate and forge relationships between labor-intensive processes, interaction, and social constructions. Affect, queer, and intersectional feminist theories have framed the conceptual side of her practice, and they explore how breaking down (emotionally, institutionally, systematically) creates moments of rupture where radical change can emerge. Her current body of work focuses on the American flag as a contested symbol of freedom and its conflation with hate.

She received their BFA in sculpture from SUNY New Paltz, in 2009 and her MFA in Sculpture and Post-Studio Practices from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2018. They are currently an Assistant Professor of Art and Head of Sculpture at Florida Atlantic University.

She has participated in residencies and exhibitions across the US including Vermont Studio Center, Johnson VT; NURTUREart in Brooklyn, NY; Museum of Boulder in Boulder CO; Franconia Sculpture Park in Franconia, MN; and MoMAZoZo in Carrizozo, NM. They have received grants from the Foundation for Contemporary Art and recently, their work joined the collection of the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport Museum.


Country of residence

United States (US)

Interests and medias


Interactive art, Sculpture, Sound art, Textile art

Sculpture medias

Cement, Metal, Found objects

Sound intermedias

Sound sculpture