Melinda Steffy Exhibit at Finlandia
Hancock - January 21, 2010
Finlandia University is currently hosting an art exhibit at the Gallery, which is located at the Finnish America Heritage in Hancock. The month long exhibit which opened on January 11th features the work of Artist Melinda Steffy.
Thursday evening the University hosted an opening reception for the Philadelphia Artist. Steffy gave a talk to the audience gathered there to view the exhibit.
art consists of a variety media, painting, textiles and a variety of
According to the artist, her wok draws inspiration from her interests in memory, mythology, alchemy, geology, family history, and music. The artist explains the details of her work in the video below.
video above - Artist addresses the audience
Carrie Flaspohler, director of the
Finlandia University Gallery, notes that the poetry of Steffy’s work
lies in her ability to translate philosophical concepts into visually
complex and abstract compositions. The materials she chooses to use in
her art-making are an integral part of the finished piece.
|To enhance the meaning of the materials she uses, Steffy makes her own dyes and pigments from plants, nuts, and spices, which often have medicinal properties or applications beyond their common uses. Steffy states that the tediousness of the paint-making process, as with the stitching, sewing, papermaking, and other repetitive tasks required in her artwork, invests her even more deeply in her art.|
“I like the word ‘remnants’,” says Steffy of the exhibit’s title. “They’re fragments that you’re rescuing from a former life. What they were used for in that previous life is somehow being carried through. It’s not the end of the story.”
|above - Fable (Loss and Its Recovery)|
Included in the Finlandia University exhibit are the compositions:
“Fable (Loss and Its Recovery),” with more than 350 found barrettes on
individual paper pieces stitched together by the artist;
“Fugue (Grandmother’s Favorite),” featuring ink drawings on paper hand-made from 80-year-old sheet music; and “Aubade (Mnemosyne Sings),” comprising nine five-foot-square canvas panels dyed vibrant yellow using turmeric.
|above - Aubade (Mnemosyne Sings)|
|“The repetition and the monotony, even though I may cringe at them, become ritual and rhythm,” she adds. “They make me part of the meaning of my work and add elements of time and spirituality.”|
|Introductions II (Venus Receives)|
|Introductions I (Maas Enters)|
|Steffy received her master of fine arts degree in painting in 2006 from the University of the Arts, Philadelphia. She also earned a bachelor’s degree in religious studies at Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, Virginia.|
|The Seventh Day|
|Ode (Hestia Travels)|
Steffy’s work has been exhibited in Philadelphia at the Sam Quinn, Rosenwald-Wolf, F.U.E.L. Collection, and Highwire art galleries. It has also been shown at Villanova (Penn.) University; William Paterson University, Wayne, N.J.; the MicroMuseum, Brooklyn, N.Y.; the Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts, Wilmington; and the Lancaster (Penn.) Museum of Art. Her mural, “In Remembrance,”, hangs at the Tshwane Leadership Foundation in Pretoria, South Africa.
|Marking Passage of Time|
|Three Thousand Daughters|
|The Beauty of Memory|
|All That Remains|
|In Search of Stone (Solid Form)|