My work uses a type of strangeness that borders on the surreal or psychedelic to generate new definitions of the feminine divine. With traditional tropes, myths and iconography serving as a baseline, I use color and form, and figures melding into landscapes, to create an identity-wilderness. The work maintains an intimacy that compels the viewer to understand the bodies and faces rendered within landscape and seaside settings are there to see and be seen without compromise or passive consumption. My figures have lived and embody the feminine through experience. They stare back at the viewer, cautioning against an artificial reading of the female body as playful or dutiful or as a sex object. Rather she is nature itself, drawing energy from the sun and moon, the sky and sea; a hybrid form of myriad possibilities to reflect the maternal prism in all its complexities.
Melissa Capasso earned her MFA from Brooklyn College in 2016. Recent exhibitions include several prominent group shows and solo shows at Gold/Scopophilia (Montclair, NJ) and Sweet Lorraine Gallery (Brooklyn, NY). Reviewing the former show for Two Coats of Paint, Jennifer Rose Bonilla-Edgington wrote that Capasso’s “work’s energy invites viewers’ engagement and its intricacy stimulates them to search their own minds for connections to the content, sparking the neurons.” Capasso teaches drawing at Suffolk County Community College and has also taught at Rutgers- Newark. Residencies and honors include the Elizabeth Murray Artist Residency and the Edward F. Albee Foundation Visual Arts Fellowship.