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Melissa A Steckbauer

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In order to address conflicting social-sexual issues, I paint the bodies of people and animals intertwined. While one entity is perceived as na´ve and carnal (the animal), the other is seen as self-conscious and ashamed (the human). I formally integrate the figures of people and animals to encourage the viewer to draw the animal aspect from human issues and the human aspect from animal issues. For example in Johanna und Melissa, the piece is an interpersonal analysis of one of my relationships. By openly addressing the 'kink' in our dynamic, I found that the communication, honesty, and love improved between Johanna and myself. I paint small, tender images on wood and large, strapping paintings on unstretched canvas.