Joan Mitchell Center

Artist residency, 2021

A five-month-long artist residency at the Joan Mitchell Center in New Orleans. 

Video Description

“My name is Mary Grace Bernard. I’m a performance artist and I also work in photography, and digital video, and installation. I like the idea of going into the uncomfortable realm when it comes to disability and chronic illness. Typically, I’m doing performance work, but then because of COVID, I’ve been trying to explore new ways of doing performances: either being in the studio on my own and filming them or trying to use materials that are often in contact with my body like the medical equipment. I just started tacking them to the wall in spirally designs that are reminiscent of crip time, which is a whole disability concept which is ignoring linear time and saying that there is no getting better, it’s just [signals never-ending circles with her hand while fluttering her tongue]. I decided to bejewel my body. Bejeweling and sanctifying my body [means that] even though it’s “broken” or “sick,” it has value.” 

image documentation courtesy of Cfreedom Photography and Mary Grace Bernard


Joan Mitchell Foundation

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video documentation filmed by Cfreedom Photography and Dave Greber and edited by Melissa Dean