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Wales Airshow
6-7 July

An Ode to Integration

MLArt: Melissa Rodrigues, Laurentina Miksys and Joel Morris

31 May – 06 July 2024

In a world shaped by migration and the complexities of identity MLArt proudly presents an exploration of diversity. Against the backdrop of our society this exhibition delves into the threads of multiculturalism inviting viewers to reflect and connect.

As artists we approach the idea of ‘otherness’ with empathy and curiosity telling stories that celebrate the unique narratives shaping our shared humanity. Through a variety of mediums and perspectives we contemplate what it means to belong. Our universal pursuit of acceptance.

From depictions of heritage to heartfelt reflections on displacement and resilience each artwork serves as a testament and as an ode to integration and to the transformative power of art in fostering understanding and unity. As visitors explore the gallery space they will be  encouraged to engage with the artwork and challenge assumptions as well as appreciate the beauty found in diversity.

An “Ode to integration” offers a reflection on how our global community continues to evolve and adjust. Join us as we celebrate the richness that comes from embracing our differences and embark on a journey towards a better future.

 


 

Melissa Rodrigues

Melissa Milanca Balencante Rodrigues is Swansea based fine artist. Born in Guinea Bissau, Rodrigues lived in Portugal from a young age until 2016.

Rodrigues graduated in fine art from the University of Wales Trinity Saint David in July 2019. Her work is presented in a variety of mediums, such as painting, photography, installation, and sculpture.

By exploring themes of displacement, belonging, and cultural identity, and general aspects concerning the movement of people across the world, Rodrigues’ work considers one’s upbringings in diasporic communities, a reality of which she herself is a product of. Thus, her research is deeply focused in finding connections between the  portrayal  of the  ethnic body  in history and how this can influence one’s sense of self and self-worth.

A myriad of artists have influenced Rodrigues’ practice, to name a few: Yinka Shonibare, Kara walker, Sonia Boyce, Grada Kilomba, Sidney Cerqueira, chris Ofili, amongst others.

Laurentina Miksys

The reality of life is described in my photographs as a continuous but changing whole. It is like the pulse of life. My photography is associated with the constant creation of new forms, the mutual penetration of the past and the present.

As such, it explores various levels of reality: the reality of who or what is described by the image and the reality of experience and feeling; whether the subject’s, the viewers, or my own. This is what we bring to the image and, once transformed, take away with us.

More important than generalisation is the immediate capture of a real moment in life and the preservation of the spontaneous emotion that filled it in photography. My images have a special lyricism and sensibility, an optimistic gaze of man and life. However, my portraits are not about how someone looks; rather, they are about how I feel they look.

J. Morris

As an artist, I immerse myself in the delicate dance between reality and perception, using charcoal and photography as my mediums of exploration. With a foundation laid as a textile and screen printing specialist and honed through years of freelancing and community collaborations, I strive to capture the essence of existence. Peeling back the layers of ordinary moments, revealing the extraordinary beauty hidden within. With every creation, I aim to evoke a sense of wonder, provoking introspection and connecting souls through the universal language of art.

Image: Untitled, Collaborative poster

Find out more

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