Supernature • Melissa LaO

Mar 6 to Apr 1, 2013 • Tall Gallery

Visual artist and architect Melissa LaO unveils Supernature, her third solo exhibition, at Finale Art File’s Tall Gallery on March 6.

Supernature is a collection of landscapes rendered in oil on canvas. These are paintings that capture the spaces, scenes and hues of the worlds beyond the gray borders of the city: desolate shores, the rushing, intense force of the sea, the stark outlines of trees. Pensive yet powerful, LaO’s paintings seek beauty in the silence, solace and simplicity of natural world.

LaO’s works go beyond a naturalistic or faithful rendering of landscape, framing and tinting the scenes with sentiments and her own reflections on the realm “between what we see, what we experience, what we remember and how we choose to feel.” The titles of the works are eloquent, almost poetic, reminders of these encounters between self and nature.

Supernature is LaO’s quiet tribute to nature as a space of solace, where the personal and the natural merge. Images are sourced from the artist’s own memories, documentation of travels, and random scenes. “I paint the space I occupy, a mad mix of memory, images floating in from tacked up pictures on my studio walls,” she writes.

Melissa LaO holds bachelors and masteral degrees in architecture from the Southern California Institute of Architecture in Los Angeles and Columbia University in New York, respectively. She currently lives and works in Makati City, Philippines. Her first two solo exhibitions were held in 1992 and 1995 at the Ayala Museum.

Artworks from the Show

All of us

All of us, Melissa LaO, 2011, Oil on canvas, 60×53 in

All plants need love

All plants need love, Melissa LaO, 2012, Oil on canvas, 88×68 in

Always dreaming of elsewhere

Always dreaming of elsewhere, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 14×18 in

Blessings and offerings

Blessings and offerings, Melissa LaO, 2012, Oil on canvas, 87½×68 in

Be kind be brief

Be kind be brief, Melissa LaO, 2012, Oil on canvas, 88×68 in

Different colors made of tears

Different colors made of tears, Melissa LaO, 2011, Oil on canvas, 68×88 in

I drink to all the ships in the sea

I drink to all the ships in the sea, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 24×108 in

I'm the home neither of them have and they're mine

I'm the home neither of them have and they're mine, Melissa LaO, 2011, Oil on canvas, 88×68 in

In a bad bad world, drugs area a rational response to insanity

In a bad bad world, drugs area a rational response to insanity, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 24×36 in

Mankind leaps upon the moon

Mankind leaps upon the moon, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 48×36 in

Money isn't enough, you've gotta give your heart

Money isn't enough, you've gotta give your heart, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 20×30 in

Overflowing

Overflowing, Melissa LaO, 2011, Oil on canvas, 24×36 in

Running away from home

Running away from home, Melissa LaO, 2011, Oil on canvas, 19½×27½ in

Stay free

Stay free, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 36×24 in

The only thing that interests me is news from home

The only thing that interests me is news from home, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 48×40 in

The strangers across the sea

The strangers across the sea, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 48×40 in

We would like to help you but you are so bizarre

We would like to help you but you are so bizarre, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 48×40 in

The world is big

The world is big, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 48×36 in

We'll only ever wear blue

We'll only ever wear blue, Melissa LaO, 2013, Oil on canvas, 88×68 in

You spend way too much time alone

You spend way too much time alone, Melissa LaO, 2010, Oil on canvas, 36×40 in

There's a big tree in the garden

There's a big tree in the garden, Melissa LaO, 2011, Oil on canvas, 36×24 in