Halle A, Station-Berlin. Joint partitipation with Gallery Karin Guenther, Hamburg
Michaela Melián has been working as a visual artist and musician in a variety of media, such as drawing, objects, photography, film, music, and text. In her multi-media installations Melián reveals questions about the historicity of places, memory, and language, as well as internalized moments of (re) construction and projection. Using a myriad of references to cultural history, pop culture, and socio-political issues, Melián generates a complex network of meanings, narratives, and potential interpretations.
For the glass paintings of the installation "In a Mist", Melián picks up on motifs of Modernist utopian visions, from the Soviet Union’s New Economic Policy (1921) to the Great Depression in the United States (1929), leading directly to the present-day difficulties between Berlin and Athens.
Two of the pieces feature drawings of the radio tower in Moscow, a landmark of Russian avant-garde architecture built in 1922 by Vladimir Shuchov. Two other glass paintings deal with textile patterns, one a woven piece by the Bauhaus artist Anni Albers, and the other a fabric pattern by the Russian Constructivist artist Varvara Stepanova; both were designed in 1929.
Two more glass pieces are made of one-way mirror glass and serve as a translation of Melián’s installation, Lunapark, a dynamic projection of urban silhouettes, as well as an adaptation of the set design for Berthold Brecht’s Mother, which is, in turn, based on the novel of the same name by Maxim Gorky, originally performed in 1932 at the Komödienhaus on the Schiffbauerdamm in Berlin.
Each piece of glass hangs freely in the space, having been painted, stamped, printed, and ultimately fired using various, classic glass-painting techniques.
Image: MICHAELA MELIÁN, In a Mist, 2014, Installation view, Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe. Photo: Stephan Baumann