Nancy Margolis Gallery is pleased to present Melodie Provenzano’s first solo exhibition with the gallery titled “Stealth Peace” opening Thursday, May 14, 6-8pm, and on view through June 27, 2015. Provenzano will show a new series of highly detailed paintings of single objects and still lifes.
“Over the years I have collected hundreds of objects. I have containers stacked to the ceiling in my studio filled with toys, glassware, figurines, bows and other various things. It’s a well of inspiration that I rely upon when composing the still lifes that I draw and paint from direct observation. The artworks are like a catalog of dreams with layers of meaning open to interpretation. One may find impressions, reflections and sensations as various as the objects in them. The meanings are revealed through visual metaphors of the experiences that we share as human beings, dependent as much upon where the viewer is coming from as where I have been.”
– Melodie Provenzano
Melodie Provenzano’s work is much more than still life painting. Each piece is painted with the utmost detail. Her compositions are filled with a diverse array of nostalgic, common objects that together suggest endless interpretation. Provenzano works on one painting at a time, making it her world until its completion. She begins by assembling the objects on a tabletop. Her skill in composing elaborate arrangements come from her ten year background as a window dresser for Saks Fifth Avenue. The objects in each of the still life arrangements are chosen deliberately, based on the level of emotional reaction and meaning Provenzano gleans from them. Setting them up is like playing, arranging, rearranging, studying how they look until she arrives at a composition she likes. Melodie says, “This part of the process is quite fun. I respond to the visual and emotional stimulation of how objects relate, reflect light, cast shadows and inhabit space.” Once she is satisfied with the placement of the objects, she begins to draw, and paint the composition from life.
Paintings such as “Heaven” and “Hell” have a specific theme in contrast to “Champbaby!” a straightforward, playful spin on the common found object – a full champagne glass spilling out miniature toy baby figurines.
In addition to the still life compositions Provenzano paints singular objects, notably, the two largest paintings in the exhibition, “Color Bow” and “Reign Bow” each 54” x 72”. Enlarged way beyond their normal size these otherwise mundane objects are imbued with a gorgeous powerful presence.
Two large installations are included in the exhibition, the largest, 19 small paintings, spanning over 22 feet in width on multiple custom shaped canvases. Within the installation are many paintings of single objects, such as a set of Russian nesting dolls, ceramic figurines, and graphic shapes that link the painting into a pattern suggesting a woven basket.
Nostalgia, memory, loss, a bygone era, these are the underlying themes Provenzano stirs. Bringing together her passion for collecting found objects, eventually the subject of her paintings, we see this melding into her art practise alongside a thoughtful searching with-in.
MELODIE PROVENZANO lives and works in New York City. Provenzano graduated from Parsons School of Design in 1996. After receiving her BFA, she freelanced for more than a decade dressing storefront windows and showroom displays for Saks 5th Avenue, Donna Karan, Louis Vuitton, Ferragamo and Hermes. At this time, she sharpened her drawing and painting skills while developing her art. Melodie has exhibited in group shows such as “Still Life”, Nancy Margolis Gallery, NYC, “Playing Around”, The Brattleboro Museum, VT, “Champagne & Baloney”, Jeff Bailey Gallery, NYC, “Singles”, Geoffrey Young Gallery, Great Barrington, MA and solo shows Lyons Wier Gallery, NYC, Goya Contemporary, Baltimore, MD and Carrie Secrist Gallery, Chicago, IL.
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