Melissa is a Los Angeles-based mixed media and installation artist, drawing inspiration from her mixed-race background and exploring themes of personal identity and cultural experiences. Her artwork serves as a platform for self-discovery, female empowerment, and a critique of societal beauty standards. With a meticulous approach and a keen eye for detail, Melissa creates authentic and meaningful pieces that aim to resonate deeply with viewers.

What inspired the creation of the work showcased in the 'Chroma' exhibition?

In my ongoing series, "Filtered Reflections," I delve into the influence of altered images in media and the elusive pursuit of perfection. Each piece is born through a meditative process in which I confront my own reflection and flaws, meticulously veiling them with a continuous thread. The center of each mirror embodies a near-perfection that aligns with my capabilities. The thread is painstakingly aligned, resulting in a harmonious interplay of colors. Meanwhile, the periphery of each mirror appears imperfect and chaotic, showcasing the challenges and failures inherent in the process. It stands as a reminder that the quest for perfection in our appearance is destined to fall short. Through the 'Chroma' exhibition, I aim to inspire reflection upon their perceptions of beauty and encourage the embrace of authenticity and self-acceptance.

Can you provide insights into your creative process?

Where do you draw inspiration from in terms of color choices?My creative process harmonizes material exploration with focused concept development. I take pleasure in experimenting with diverse mediums, often leading to some of my most cherished creations. Regarding color choices, they sometimes emerge in tandem with the conceptualization process. Residing in the vibrant heart of Los Angeles provides me with ceaseless color inspiration, drawn from locales such as the fabric and flower districts of Downtown LA to the sunsets of Venice Beach.

How does your chosen medium amplify your ability to convey color in your artwork?

The synergy of mirrors and thread possesses a captivating enchantment. Mirrors function as both blank canvases and magnifiers, intensifying colors through their reflections. They also possess the unique capability to introduce additional colors or images into the artwork, contingent upon what or who is reflected. This dynamic poses a challenge during photography, where the photographer can either become part of the artwork by capturing their own reflection or collaborate with me to influence the viewer's experience of the final photo.

What message do you intend to convey to viewers and collectors engaging with your art?

This series serves as a poignant reminder that the images propagated by media often remain unattainable and artificial. The utilization of tools like Photoshop, makeup, and cosmetic surgery allows alteration of appearance to conform to ever-changing beauty standards. Nevertheless, my artwork strives to motivate viewers toward embracing authenticity and self-acceptance, prompting them to question societal expectations prior to contemplating modifications to their appearance. The intent is not to vilify those who opt for such means, but rather to inspire introspection and empower individual choice.

What current projects are you engaged in and what do you anticipate for this season?

As the season unfolds, I might temporarily shift focus from this series, a practice I periodically undertake. I am excited about delving into fresh concepts and experimenting with different mediums, all while sustaining the creation of distinctive art pieces.