The artist Tameka Norris, also known as Meka-Jean and mynameisnotshorty, draws indiscriminately from painting, video, and performance as means of describing experience and racial identity. For her 2013 Yale MFA thesis, Norris presented both an installation of painted assemblages and photographs as well as a performance, wherein she circled an empty gallery dressed in an orange jumpsuit. During the performance, titled Untitled (Final Performance) Manifesto, she remained silent and pressed against the wall, her mouth kissing it and leaving a thin line of red-tinted saliva. Other work has explored her identity and her image using a blend of fiction and diaristic video, often including recreations of works by earlier artists which re-contextualize those images into Norris’s body, voice, era, and the YouTube video medium.
A graduate of UCLA, Yale, and the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Norris has been showing regularly across the country. She has been included in exhibitions at the Contemporary Art Museum Houston, the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, and the Prospect New Orleans Biennial.