Melissa Pokorny is fascinated with the “thingness” of things and the improbable relationships they can have to each other. Resin dogs, songbirds, and ersatz rocaille décor gathered from hobby stores, internet collectible sites, and estate sales are arranged with digitally rendered, photo-collaged architectural elements eliciting memories of spaces. The artist has culled, collected, repurposed these found objects and images of remembered spaces putting them into a close conversation to suggest kitschy symbolism and whimsically mythic associations. Using the strategies of still life composition and tableau vivant painting, Pokorny's work explores the arbitrary, the inappropriate, and the accidental while evoking a wry sense of melancholy.
“My small scale wall works feature aluminum mounted, hand cut photographs shot at night in my garden. These are combined with cast or handmade hooks and found objects to create erotically charged narratives that address the entanglement of desire, utility, and fantasy.”
Melissa’s work has been shown in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Chicago, and Brooklyn. Her work is in the collections of the Oakland Museum of California, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Orange County Art Museum. Her work was included in group show Unnatural Presence, Elles / Platform, and My Darkest LIght Will Shine at Platform where she has also had two solo shows. Melissa lives, works, and and teaches at the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana.
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Foxes 2015, inkjet on aluminum, gaffers tape, glazed ceramic, felt, vinyl and found objects, 17 x 20 x 4 inches
Ghost 2015, inkjet on aluminum, vinyl, polyurethane, found object, magnet, 8 x 9 x 4 inches
From the Kindred Subjects series
“The works in this series are made up of elements found in my larger bodies of work. They are all related, each having to do with place, memory, the known, and easily accessible, as well as things that are hidden. The idea of wonder, the making of meaning, and ways of knowing the world are threads that connect these kin.”