Welcome to FIGMENT people, a series of stories about the people behind FIGMENT Oakland! We’ll meet some people on the core event team, artists and volunteers. Want to hear about a specific FIGMENT team member or volunteer? Email us and tell us who you’d like to see: firstname.lastname@example.org
FIGMENT person: Marissa Joy Clark
Marissa is FIGMENT Oakland’s Communication Director this year, and was last year’s Social Media Manager. Like most people who get involved in FIGMENT she heard about it through a friend. When she heard they needed some social media help, she dived right in and started spreading the good word about FIGMENT!
Marissa says, “FIGMENT merges two things I love passionately: Oakland and interactive art. Working to make more people in Oakland aware of our event, and to help bring in more artists to share what they do at FIGMENT is like a dream come true!”
For Marissa, the most important facet of FIGMENT is its accessibility. “It’s easy to get to, it’s free, and it’s an all-day event. There are no membership dues, no tickets, no gated security, no barriers physical or financial to ‘get in.’ You are already ‘in’ the minute you set foot inside Mosswood Park.
“The thing that has always made me feel uncomfortable in traditional art settings, whether it’s a gallery, a theater, or a concert hall, is how they are all formed around this idea of otherness and class. Those places have a definitive value, and I’m grateful for them, but there’s so much more to art than that. Art is meant to be for everyone.
“I get the exact opposite feeling at FIGMENT. I believe art should be engaging, and the pinnacle of engagement is when you invite your audience to become part of the art. For me FIGMENT feels like freedom, to explore, to interact, to be authentically human, and most of all to have fun! ”
What else does she do when she’s not working on FIGMENT?
Marissa is no stranger to the arts! She studied opera performance at Boston University and Salzburg College in Austria. She has been involved in community theater and dance performance her whole life.
Marissa is one third of Siren Syndicate, an Oakland-based fusion tribal belly dance troupe led by the illustrious, Lady Fred.
She is a five-year veteran of Burning Man, and recently took on being a theme camp organizer for Camp Morning Cookie, and built its interactive tea house geodome where she and her camp mates held quirky Dust-Tea Ceremonies in Black Rock City.
Other things Marissa loves: psychogeography, situational design, and teaching people to properly compost.
Siren Syndicate + guest dancers backstage at TribalFest 13