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I am a media artist who works across modes of communication, from video and photographic images to sound, text, and display. Inspired by the presentation modes that are found in the institutions that specialize in the delivery of knowledge – museums, libraries, and the media. I consider each of these and their roles and contrast them with heuristic experiential modes of acquiring knowledge. I mine these same locations and their archives for the materials that I utilize in my work.

My projects are concerned with exploration. Using my own family legacy as a footpath I am tracing the arc of exploration from the first spark that motivates an adventure to the final resting place of the ephemera and the propagation of the mythic character. Specifically I am examining South Pacific exploration through the lens of my Grandfather and Great Uncle’s voyages. They sailed the South Seas for the American Museum of Natural History in the late 1930’s – early 1940’s and their artifacts and recordings are found in several museum and library collections.

My explorations begin in the institutions that house the archives and tell the tales of these acts and expand out in to the field, re-imagining and representing material. I am drawn to the character of the explorer and their singular focus on frontiers in spite of risk­–the possibility that they could see something authentically new that could then lead to a place in history.

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 in Ireland,
Canada, Belgium, Germany and Japan. She has received an ARC Grant from the Durfee Foundation, two Hoff Foundation Grants, and was awarded a Professional Artist Fellowship from the Arts Council for Long
Beach. Her work was included in a DVD compilation of short videos by the LA Film Forum. She was a finalist for a 2012 Vimeo Video Award and was recently named “Most Promising New Artist” at MADATAC 05, in Madrid, Spain.

McLean currently lives and works in Sango, Tennessee.