571 Projects is pleased to present Melora Griffis: wings and murmurs, an exhibition of new oil paintings. Griffis’ work has been widely exhibited in solo and group exhibitions, and this is her first solo show with 571 Projects. In this body of work the artist explores themes of women’s subjugation, home, and loss through an exuberant palette and painterly brushstroke.
Drawing on the visual traditions of German Expressionist painters including Otto Dix and George Grosz, Griffis paints with a vivid and unusual palette. This body of work comprises figurative and abstract paintings on canvas and on paper in which she explores the representational qualities of abstraction and the non-objective qualities of figuration. In Bruised Kite Hope Flares (2010, acrylic, pastel and graphite on paper, 40” x 26”) glimpses of forms and colors peek through layers of white paint as though through a tear in a curtain, hinting at things forgotten or repressed. Unsichtbar (2011, oil on linen, 46” x 30”) shows a seated woman, hands folded in her lap. The figure is anonymous, her head painted over in white and her identity lost. Griffis’ work is emotionally unguarded, tapping into underlying psychological states. Her paintings are high stakes and aesthetically dramatic pieces of fragmented narratives depicted in loose and masterly brushstrokes.
A native New Yorker, Griffis received her BFA from The Rhode Island School of Design and participated in the Mentor Program at Santa Monica College of Design, Art, and Architecture. She has had solo exhibitions at the Pamela Williams Gallery (Amagansett, NY), Lizan Tops Gallery and AE Gallery (both East Hampton, NY), Whitney Art Works (Greenport, NY), The Boylan Gallery (Rhinebeck, NY), and Blue Heron Arts Center (New York, NY). Her work has been included in group shows at The Waterfront Museum (Brooklyn, NY), White Columns (New York, NY), Bowman/Bloom Gallery (New York, NY), and Boltax Gallery (Shelter Island, NY) among others. Griffis has received fellowships from the Constance Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts, (Ithaca, NY), Schloss Pluschow (Mecklenberg-Vorpommern, Germany), The Edward F. Albee Foundation (Montauk, NY) and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts (Amherst, VA).