How does your work address the relationship between the human and natural worlds?
My paintings examine feelings of vulnerability, connection, isolation, fear, and survival imagined through invented landscapes. My work strives to address how we, and our environment, are being impacted by climate change. I create paintings and drawings that position animals and humans in the landscape and strive to capture a melancholic and anxious mood through scale, color, and atmosphere. I rely on my imagination and my emotional response to the world around me to inform the narratives in my work.
This current group of work has been developed by referencing photographs I have taken primarily of my family in the landscape. We often return to a remote location in the Cascades and spend time hiking and absorbing the beauty and isolation of the landscape and animals around us. I reinterpret these images through drawing and painting to create a fabricated space and narrative. I am interested in juxtaposing humans, herd and flock animals, with icebergs/islands. The landscape becomes a metaphor for both safety and apathy. I want the viewer to question where this landscape is and what is happening. I hope the paintings reveal a truth through fiction.
Melissa Dold was born in Redwood City, CA and currently lives and works in Seattle, WA. She teaches visual art classes at Seattle Preparatory School. She is married to the artist, Kyle Cook, and they are raising two daughters. Melissa received a BFA in Painting from the University of Washington, and an MFA in Painting from Boston University.