Lauren Mele was born in France (1986) and raised just outside of London, UK. She received her BFA from the Art Institute of Boston (USA) majoring in painting and minoring in art history in 2008. She went on to receive her MA from the Sotheby’s Institute of Art in London (UK), focusing on contemporary art history and theory.
Mele is a part of two collaborative collectives, the Tunnel as well as ArtCan. Together they apply for funding for group exhibitions as well as donate to charitable causes annually. She has participated in charity auctions individually, including donating a commission to the Red Cross annual fundraising event in London.
She is a part of the online community, the Artist Quarter and is a member of the Artist Network. She lives London and works from her studio at Bow Arts in London. Alongside her practice, she does work on commission. Her work is in private collections internationally.
In 2018 she was shortlisted for the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition in London. She will be displaying her work at the Talented Art Fair in 2019 in London.
Anxiety, hesitation, lust, and gluttony are never a step too far in any direction of my life. I work from memory; memories sidestep objectivity.
Their visual manifestations are intensely personal and revealing.
My work makes the fleeting essence of memory, tangible; the paintingsput flesh to the bones of narrative. The unreliable and organic nature of recall makes for paintings that flirt with improvisation and result in vibrating and, in my case, anxiety laden energy. Working with concepts of femininity and the undercurrents that point to notions of the feminine, androgyny and feminist; my paintings unabashedly portray women delighted in theirskins. Embracing flaws, sexuality and indulgence, they urge the viewer to engage with the unsavoury sides of themselves. Social labels of grotesque and lust associated with the body interest me, my figures explore the in tricacies of the two.
Femininity can sidestep the notion of ‘pretty’ and occasionally puts ‘gluttony’ on the table. My work emphasises the physical; flaws are exaggerated, embraced and flaunted. My figures, using myself as a physical point of reference, exude flamboyance and confidence, two attributes I strive for in my everyday but somehow suppress. The term ‘feminine’ should be flexible and fluid, say the figures in my paintings, and more strongly associated with the term ‘feminist’.
Society manages to keep the two concepts fairly disassociated, when in fact both should bring the word ‘robust’ to mind.