The fragments of domestic objects – scraps of crockery and ceramic shards – represented in Meoni’s work partake on escapades between the artist’s apartment and studio, travelling across Meoni’s balcony and ending up piled in precarious formations in her studio space. Meoni portrays the metamorphosis that these everyday objects undergo from being comforting inhabitants of domestic spaces (teapots and cups) to accumulating across the passageway of a balcony, a place of both transit and aperture, to reaching their final destination: becoming a part of Meoni’s studio for her to paint, sculpting into ambiguous assemblages (albeit Meoni views them as paintings) and thus transgressing their conventional forms and functions. Each assemblage component has a subjective history: ceramic shards collected from second-hand shops, her mother’s age-old pieces, gifted china to the artist from friends who chose a useful way to dispose of their ‘rubbish’ (Meoni’s treasure). Hence, Meoni re-purposes these delicate objects by mothering, nurturing and mending them back to life in the form of inter-relational pieces that become a part of one another. It is a global affair as these pieces are accumulated from all over the world – their (broken) past lives reignited for the sake of art.
For Meoni, it is important to be aware of the dichotomy between the space that she lives in and the space that she works in. These two spaces merge together as a result of the objects that she paints, which in their lifetime exist in both spaces. Meoni sculpts and nurtures the accumulated objects, helping them to evolve into their new entity: objects for the artist’s gaze. After initially handling the objects, Meoni allows the composition to take its final form by permitting the objects to tumble into their final realisation. The objects exist in their becoming stage; awaiting their painterly form. This becoming stage is reflected by the portrayals of the objects on the canvas that equivocally appear, at times, to be falling through the space – surviving in a half-way liminal place. Thus Meoni does not portray permanence; no permanent positions are established and instead a potent precariousness always prevails on her canvas.
Stefano Loria’s work is both a form of action painting – gestural energy and the disruptive force of colour explode on the canvas – and an evocation of austerity through essential lines of modernist architecture that adorn his canvases. Hence, the forms in Loria’s paintings are heavily based on architecture as the artist considers the discipline fundamental to his work, viewing it as something that connects multiple languages and fields of expression. Loria uses the colourful, emotive visual language of abstraction to attain visual form to his thoughts – he perceives painting as a medium that encourages a greater interaction with the senses. Loria considers his paintings as the initial beginnings, the fruition, of his thoughts. He views his paintings in terms of structures and attempts to attain a set of mental and visual plans on the composition: overlaps and collisions between different worlds where accuracy rules in opposition to freedom.
Loria is also a writer, which informs a lot of his work. The dichotomy between painting and writing, for the artist, lies in the notion that painting has a material depth – a pleasure of form – whereas writing is a discipline that demands a certain amount of sacrifice. The shrinkage of shapes in Loria’s recent works lend themselves to a geometric rigour set against backgrounds where the treatment of colour is dominated by a discipline that regulates the canvas’s shades and atmospheres. Ultimately, Loria’s compositions ought to be viewed as utopian architectural constructions. The artist’s preoccupation with the balance between the structure of space and the vitality of execution is seen through his works’ simplicity: few essential elements construct the picture plane (similar to a modernist architectural project). This minimalism seemingly initially appears fragile, but on closer inspection becomes increasingly intense due to the compositional staging of vast planes of vivid colour that the viewer can’t help but sink into.