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Melissa Harshman

University of Georgia
Georgia, USA
21" x 20"

Artist Statement: For the last 5 years I have been exploring ways in which to incorporate digital images into traditional printmaking practices. Thus far I have used serigraphy, Xerox transfer to traditional litho plates, Pronto industrial litho offset plates, and most recently photo positive and negative litho plates.

My current body of work entitled "Word Play" was inspired by a digital portfolio I was invited to be in called "Pictionary". The only requirement was the image had to contain either a dictionary image or encyclopedia image. I especially liked using the dictionary image and started my hunt for old dictionaries at flea markets and antique stores. Each of the images in "Word Play" began by scanning in an image that appealed to me from an old dictionary. I have now expanded the source materials to items such as coloring books and a variety of children's workbooks. The image is then embellished and layered with other images such as cookbook recipes, cakes, children's doodles and other eclectic pictures to create new meanings and translations of familiar images. In this work my focus has specifically been geared towards identity issues surrounding women. Some of the images are completely whimsical while others have underlying political content. My goal was to create images that were aesthetically pleasing and conceptually significant, often playing off the meaning of the chosen image.
Bette Davis Chocolate Layer Cake
21" x 20"