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JUL / AUG   2008 
Plant Zero @ artspace
Studio #15

Dark Passage
encaustic on paper
11 1/2 x 11 1/2 inches

Journey to Places Unknown
encaustic on paper
9 1/2 x 19 inches

Artist Statement

Although I consider myself a multi-media artist, my primary focus is printmaking, encaustic, and collage. Several years ago I was introduced to monotypes, a type of printmaking, and it was love at first sight. Working in monotypes is very exciting to me. It is a blending of painting and print that you can't get any other way. In my other medium, encaustic and collage, I approach the two in an experimental fashion. Encaustic is the ultimate process where I employ hot bees wax, a heat gun and a propane torch to create my images. Pattern and texture, as well as line and color, are important concerns to me. I am continually experimenting and trying new ways to handle my materials, and how to design, compose, and color my works. I feel that I have just begun to explore those endless varieties. For my subject matter I turn to nature; from memories of special places I have visited, to single flowers, to places that hold deep personal memories, the natural world has touched my emotions. Even in my more experimental and abstract works, nature is the primary guiding force. My objective is to transform those memories and emotions into an expressive work of art. The memory of those times whether it's a walk in the deep woods or watching a flower unfold and blossom, these are the feelings I try to convey. I attempt to evoke in my art those private universal memories which one feels when drawing close to nature.

Artist Bio

Mary Melton is an artist and printmaker residing in the City of Richmond, Va. Melton was born in Richmond and received her elementary and secondary education in the Richmond Public Schools. She also attended V.C.U. to study Art History and Psychology. From her Art History exposure, Melton realized her real love was creating her own art.

Melton has studied at The Virginia Museum Studio Art program and at The Hand Workshop. She also attended several workshops with a nationally recognized artist and continues to study on her own.

While attending a monotype class at The Virginia Museum, she discovered the exciting possibilities of printmaking. Melton continues to explore monotypes and several other printmaking forms. After becoming interested in encaustic and collage, she attended classes in Kingston, N.Y.

Her work shows in Richmond and several other galleries in the Commonwealth. A number of her works are in private collections and one piece is in the collection of a former Presidential candidate. (He knows art better than politics.)

Melton's work has received a variety of awards and praise. She has received Second Place for oils at the Bath County Art Show, an Award of Distinction at the Shenandoah Valley Art Center, several Juror choice awards at the Shockoe Bottom Art Center and at the Richmond Artist Association annual all-member exhibit. Her work has also been in several Print Invitational Shows, in particular -- Longwood College and Emory and Henry College. Melton was selected to participate in the First Printmakers Biennial show at the Hand Workshop and in the '10 Ground Breaking Printmakers' Exhibition in Richmond.

In 1999, Melton created an exhibition, titled - "Speaking for voices Long Silenced," in remembrance and in dedication of The Armenian Genocide of 1915. This historic event is often referred to as the 'forgotten genocide.' This was a very personal and life affirming show, as her mother and grandmother were both witness to and survivors of the genocide.

Ms. Melton is a member of Metropolitan Richmond Artist Association and Past President of the Richmond Artist Association. Melton states, "The awards and honors are a wonderful affirmation, but when I was introduced by my granddaughter, Brittany as 'this is my grandmother- she's and artist', that I truly felt I was an artist."

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