Affiliated Artist Jesikah Maria Ross

Jesikah Maria Ross writes:

"My work combines art, education and activism. Drawing from a deep and varied background in community development, popular education and digital media, I create projects that are informed by theory, grounded in practice and shaped by participants’ needs, issues and aspirations. These collaborative media arts projects combine storytelling, action research, production and public events to generate media literacy, community capacity building, creative self-expression and civic action.

My background in community-based media include projects in both rural and urban areas, working in the US and abroad, university teaching, non-profit management, community arts and grassroots organizing. I’ve worked with a wide range of constituencies—from disadvantaged youth and developmentally challenged adults to people living with AIDS, former prison inmates, factory workers, clergy, immigrants, and ranchers. Together we’ve produced place-based photography, video, audio and web projects geared toward individual and social transformation.

I currently direct the UC Davis Art of Regional Change (ARC) program which brings scholars, students, artists, and social action groups together to collaborate on media projects that strengthen communities, generate public scholarship, and inform regional decision-making. Recent ARC projects that I created media for include Restore/Restory: A People's History, Youth Voices for Change, and Passion for the Land. Recent independent media projects I co-created include Saving The Sierra: Voices of Conservation in Action, an award-winning multimedia project that uses public radio, the Web, and citizen storytelling activities to document community efforts to conserve the culture, economy, and environment of the Sierra Nevada mountain range of California and Maquilapolis [city of factories], a PBS documentary that explores globalization through the eyes of female factory workers. I've also co-founded the National Association of Media Arts & Culture's Leadership Institute, helped launch KDRT 95.7 LPFM, and design participatory media projects for organizations in Europe, Africa, and the United States."