Juxtaposition: Mariapia Malerba and Mila Bridger
Exhibits: May 3 – 31, 2019
Opening Reception: May 3 • 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Conversational Walk and Talk with Artists: May 4 • 10 a.m.
Theatre Gallery: Myra Roberts
Member Gallery: Julie Siler Olander
Walk in a world of whimsy through the eyes of Mila Bridger and Mariapia Malerba’s vibrant, fantastical works that explore liveliness, nature and the human imagination.
Energetic colors and manufactured fantasy create a surreal display of fantasy and saturated vitality that can only be imagined by the women in show.
Bridger’s photographic work is profoundly influenced by her childlike imagination and the natural world that surrounds her – she creates the world she wants to live in. Paired with Malerba’s fantastical multimedia work that explores humans, nature, and human nature, this exhibit transcends reality.
About the Artists
Born in Puglia, a region in Southern Italy, Mariapia studied at the Accademia di Belle Arti, a fine art institute in Lecce, Italy. After earning a degree in art with primary coursework in scenography, set design and costume history, she moved to Lake Como in Lombardy, Italy to work as a textile designer.
Mariapia has created textile designs for well-known Italian fashion houses such as Dolce & Gabbano, Versace and Cavali and in the states as a senior designer at Chico’s White House/Black Market.
Working in Italy was an extraordinary time for Mariapia to grow as an artist. With a strong penchant to examine the beauty of life, she is fascinated by colors, objects and shapes and enjoys combining concepts that are diverse. As an artist, she has produced a great range of art, abstraction, hyperrealism, installation, video and fashion.
Mariapia’s prize-winning work has been showcased in various galleries throughout Italy and America.
Originally from the city of Koszalin in the northwest of Poland, Mila is best known for her abstractly surreal, color-saturated photographs featuring what she labels as manufactured fantasy. Often her models are wearing gas masks, some elaborately decorated, as they prepare for the end of the world in lavish style.
Although renowned for her fantastical portraits with an Expressionist flair, she looks more to the classic painters than modern photographers for influence, particularly the Dutch masters and baroque paintings of the 17th century.
Her mom is an art historian so Mila literally grew up with the history of art and painting. Her dad was a nuclear physicist in Poland and worked in the airline industry in the states. Now retired, he is Mila’s favorite travel companion. They have taken over 30 trips together finding their own points of interest without relying on guides. She “loves experiencing the new air” wherever she goes.