Hanging By A Thread

  • Start

    24 March 2016
  • End

    14 April 2016
  • Artist

    Melanie Grirzka del Villar

  • Venue

    Altro Mondo Picasso 3/F The Picasso Boutique Serviced Residences, 119 L.P. Leviste St., Salcedo Village, Makati

Hanging by a Thread


A Solo Show by Melanie Gritzka del Villar

Altro Mondo Picasso Gallery

24 March – 14 April 2016





US-based artist Melanie Gritzka del Villar – born 1982 of German-Philippine parents – has lived, worked and studied in Germany, Spain, England, Thailand, and the Philippines. The current exhibition Hanging by a Thread reflects the artist’s concern with the current state of living in an increasingly fragmented and fragile world.


Hanging By a Thread is presented in three separate yet linked parts:

The first room focuses on communities that are dependent on the ocean for subsistence, through the raw materials that symbolize their connection to their environment. The driftwood collages are part of the artist’s series Traces. For this collection the artist uses driftwood remnants from typhoon wreckage gathered on the shores of Philippine islands. She combines this with newspaper images from local Filipino and Thai newspapers (Manila Bulletin, Bangkok Post and The Inquirer). By repurposing the disparate fragments the artist creates a platform for alternative narratives and by bringing into play overlooked surfaces and stories, she invites the audience to question given hierarchies of value. The Catch, found in the same space, further addresses these themes using image transfers connected through a fishing net.


The second section draws from old maps produced by the World Resources Institute showing data on endangered coral reefs. The artist has developed a unique technique of transferring the printed images onto gel medium. This method serves to highlight the tension between the totality of the world as coherent and complete, which the maps seek to present, and the unstable state of the medium through which it is communicated. Moreover, the process of successive transfer of the images blurs the original clarity of the information. Stitches are used by the artist in an attempt to hold the image from falling apart. Together, the layers, marks and stitches become a symbol of the artist’s creative journey marked by an ongoing search for harmony out of disparate cultural, geographical and environmental elements.

Lastly, in the annex room with large windows to the roadside, hangs the installation No Network. Here the artist has inserted her gel transfers into empty phone covers. The work echoes the way in which we filter and view the world through a screen but ultimately remain detached from reality. Information is disseminated into an overwhelming stream of images that are all-pervasive but nevertheless remain in isolation – floating and adrift.

Recycling and re-contextualizing are themes inherent in the artist’s work. Hanging by a Tread is a reminder that not all that is broken is lost.