— 5 Min Read —

Laura Mega, Artist in Residence 2023

— 5 Min Read —

Laura Mega, Artist in Residence 2023

“[Wom]en’s evil manners live in brass; their virtues we write in water.”

William Shakespeare

The Museum of Contemporary Cuts (MoCC) in 2023 — as part of “Students as Researchers: Creative Practice and University Education,” a Collateral Event organized by the New York Institute of Technology, School of Architecture and Design, approved by Leslie Lokko, curator of the Venice Architecture Biennale 2023 — is hosting Laura Mega as artist in residence from January to December 2023. The artist is one of a group of 12 international artists presenting a mobile exploration of the crisis of water. The curatorial project conceived by Lanfranco Aceti will be a long-term investigation into the elemental crisis of water, earth, wind, and fire. The artists will explore, according to their own personal aesthetic approaches and cultural underpinnings, the elemental crisis of water, its impact, and the consequences of the alterations of its mythologies and poetics. The curatorial brief, titled What If This Were The Case? – The Waters We Are In, is inspired by the meaning of ‘case’: building up a legal case as well as a case being a piece of luggage. The international sharing of knowledge, understanding, and interpretations of the current crises are paramount to resuscitate old mythologies and cultural postulates — or to develop new ones — truly inspired by communal structures of surviving, living, and possibly even thriving.

Artist’s Bio

Laura Mega works between Rome and New York. She is the creator and curator of the ‘DREAMERS’ art project and co-founder of the ‘LAZZARO_art doesn’t sleep’ project. She studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome and at the University of Image in Milan (a school centered on the five senses founded by photographer Fabrizio Ferri). Her practice combines drawing, text, embroidery, wool yarn, and printing. In addition, she sometimes uses other materials (such as pink epilating wax) on old trousseaus: sets of clothes, linens, and other accessories that a bride would bring with her to the new house. Through a contemporary and straightforward language, Laura Mega transforms symbols of a constricted and predefined femininity into works capable of conveying and investigating emotional, social, and political issues, where the irony leaves the observer responsible for the different depths of reading and interpretation. Laura Mega has exhibited at Ivy Brown Gallery (NYC), M55 Art Gallery (NYC), Resobox Gallery (NYC), Endless Biennial (NYC), Sejong Museum of Art (Seoul), MACRO – Museum of Contemporary Art of Rome (Rome), MADXI (Latina), Every Woman Biennial (London), Clio Art Fair (NYC), BAF – Bergamo Art Fair, Textile Museum of Busto Arsizio for the WTA – World Textile Art_Textile Biennial, Embroidery Museum (Valtopina), KOU Gallery (Rome). She has had collaborations with Moleskine S.p.A., SOME SERIOUS BUSINESS (Los Angeles), PULSE Art Fair – Art Basel Miami, Culture Monks (India), SENSE LAB (Milan), The Blue Bus Project (NYC). With the publishing house Pulcinoelefante (Milan), she has produced two artist’s books in a 33-copy limited edition. In 2021 she wrote and illustrated two artist books: “Amazoniano_ il nuovo HERO”, the result of her performative research on Amazon warehouse workers, and “ThePinkSide of WTF” in two versions, one of which is to be colored. Her work is part of the Moleskine Foundation, KOU Gallery, and private collections.

Works of Art

Artist’s video

Artist’s Statement

As an artistic practice I use embroidery, which in history has traditionally been entrusted to women. I want to light a beacon on the female world, but I shun all clichés and subvert them.  Where flowers and lace appear in my art, there is no frivolity; but behind an appearance of delicacy I lightly conceal my sharp messages.

By changing or overturning with my art the appearance of the form of reality, the perceived balance in all things suddenly falls apart.

Embroidery for me is simultaneously a slow and fast artistic practice, as if it were an instinctual and well-known ritual. In my artworks where text is printed, and not embroidered, each individual letter is impressed on the fabric with the pressure of my hands. For each of my artworks it is as if I am administering CPR to give them the breath of life.

Embroidery adds delicacy even if the embroidered subject or word has such a force as to contradict the gentle technique itself.

Everyone has their own idea of what the function of art is or should be. As far as I am concerned my approach to art, and art itself, borders on the obsessive. It is a necessity, a cure, a way to externalize and exasperate, to communicate, and raise awareness.

In my case, I like that my art leaves people with a smile on their lips, and a little bitter aftertaste in their mouths.

Irony is my subversive act. I sneak up unexpectedly to destabilize and leave the mind of the spectator in doubt and yet, somehow, freed.

Slowly my subversive irony enters the mind, giving it time to metabolize the content while  leaving an indelible mark that stays as a parting gift.

I am a keen and careful observer of the sh*tshow that is the contemporary world and through my art I critique it by laying bare, with full emotion, the possibilities or impossibilities of my freedom of expression.

For this very reason as an artist I have the responsibility to communicate, support, and defend those who have no voice or are not heard. My artistic practices bypasses collective stereotypes and condenses the artistic form of expression into a pure splash of color.

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