July 2019 Newsletter: Art as Antidote
“If you rigorously dissect it, you realize that everything is a shape of the totality of causes. What’s another name for the totality of causes? The Cosmos. So everything is a shape of Cosmos or God. It feels like something bigger than me—that I can’t possibly fathom but am embedded in.”
— Li Young Lee
I have a reoccurring dream that I'm walking down a flight of stairs, surrounded by flames, carrying myself as a child. Can I tell you a story?
September 2018 Newsletter: Body Electric
“I sing the body electric, The armies of those I love engirth me and I engirth them, They will not let me off till I go with them, respond to them, And discorrupt them, and charge them full with the charge of the soul.”
Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass
I often use movement as a starting point for a new work of art. I begin with a feeling in the spine and the gut. Every gesture, stroke, and stitch, radiates from that warm place.
Pièces Uniques: Exhibition at Galerie Sophie Scheidecker
Pièces Uniques, an exhibition of new sculptures by Melissa Ichiuji at Galerie Sophie Scheidecker in Paris, France.
Between June 1st and July 28th, 2018, Galerie Sophie Scheidecker invites you to enter the singular universe of American artist Melissa Ichiuji. A universe shaped since her childhood, which she has since invaded with her sculptures: dolls of hand-stitched fabric.
Elegant, colorful or dark, in balance, contorted, sad, naive, they can embody danger, love, passion, sensuality, eroticism, fear, horror. Made of vintage fabric and found objects: wood, pearls, crystals, furs, these dolls, childhood memories, become sculptures. Unique pieces, these dolls are staged and articulated by the artist to question, denounce, tell. If Melissa Ichiuji is best known for her fabric sculptures, she also explores a different technique for this new exhibition: ceramics and gives a new dimension to her sculptures by playing on the ambivalence of strength and fragility…
‘Progreny’ Soft Sculpture Exhibit Explores the Deepest Parts of Human Experience
Melissa Ichiuji’s dolls, or soft sculptures, are elevated, beautifully constructed fine art that build upon the traditions of Louise Bourgeois’ startling objects of pain and Florine Stettheimer’s figures made as sketches for her dance costume designs. Ichiuji started her career as a dancer and actor, traveling the world with theater companies. These experiences contribute greatly to her work, evident in her knowledge of anatomy, movement and the expressive power of the human form.
One DEFENSE — The creative act!
“Against the ruin of the world, there is only one defense—the creative act.”
The world is on fire and a challenge to artists, to bear witness and give voice has been thrown down. There’s no place for the ho hum. The pitch, pace, and intensity among the creative class is revving with an urgency the likes of which my American generation has never seen. Right now, all around the world, spontaneous happenings and exhibitions are channeling shapeless anxiety into fervent gestures of resistance…
In the Galleries: A Limited Number of Shades of Gray
Make You Love Me On view December 2016 at the American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center
“Bodies age, wither and ultimately fail, a process the playful yet ominous figurines evoke. They also invoke a specific loss: the fire that destroyed the artist’s family home when she was a child. This is commemorated by a series of partly charred model dwellings, and a huge steel “Goddess of the Burning House.” Like many of Ichiuji’s creations, the deity combines dread and mastery.”
Source: Washington Post