The terms of abstraction, as the references veer away from either depiction or referencing the realistic, become a means to understanding the invisible realms. The artist uses sources that are either oblique or tangential to the physical and in doing so clears up some of the mysteries of the unknowable. Meledandri’s abstract compositions have visceral associations as the organic forms appear to connect and relate in space. They hold memories of body parts, morphing growths, sacks, pouches, embryos, cell formations and a myriad of natural realms - plant, vegetable, animal, prehistoric and amoebic. They float. They move gracefully although there is an implied plastic choreography that is beyond our physical reference as if we are watching a unique birthing process or the time when the ages moved into a new form of consciousness abetted by cosmic alliances. The drawings express an ethereal sensibility.
Nina Meledandri’s very personal revelations arrest the shifting phantasmagoria that makes up the questions of substance that resides in a solid dimension only within scientific imaging. To imagine the interior workings of the human body, for instance, without the aid of specific medical knowledge brings to mind a vague array of fleshy shapes that are abstracted by the lack of particularity brought to the subject. The Meledandri drawings bring this abstracted ‘unknowing’ into a visual particularity, one that is touched by the personality of the artist. Reminiscent of Louise Bourgoise’ integrity of expression, Meledandri’s drawings have a child-like quality that is tinged with adult associations. The awareness of disease, the messiness of menstruation or childbirth, the miniscule paring down of human beings into the systems, organs and cellular structure is tainted by a lack of information and in its formlessness becomes abstract. This is the great satisfaction derived from this body of work, the comfort of ‘knowing’, even if it is an imagined ‘knowing’.
Copyright © 2007, Julie Oakes