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Rafael Melendez
Brooklyn, NY
Neighborhood: Bedford-Stuyvesant



ARTIST STATEMENT: I am a lifelong visual artist and have primarily worked in drawing and painting with forays into collage and the art zine. Figures that are often multi-limbed and feminine, alien and human emerge in much of my work. I draw and paint the language of New York’s artworld, its queer culture makers, everyday gossip and strife in an effort to combine my chosen craft and rigorous studio practice, with my humor and worldview. While I am proudly Latino, born in California’s Central Valley and raised in Texas, my work focuses not on my ethnic or cultural history but instead on the critical and sensual eye I have developed in the past fifteen years spent as a New Yorker. For many years, I did not show work or pursue a traditional art career even as my East Village living room served as both my studio and storage. I was intent on making art, seeing as much art as I could and living as an artist on my own terms. I did not seek funding or residencies, instead I worked a grueling if lucrative job as a high-end bartender, paying for art supplies and books myself. A health and financial crisis and a whirlwind romance-now-marriage resulted in my refocusing on bringing my work into the world. To sum up my artistic statement and worldview, I would have to state this about my art:
It's not traditional.
It's not commercial.
It's informed by my rich experience.
I'm fully committed to it.
I have been all my life.
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ARTIST RESUME:


Rafael Melendez



1997 Bachelors in Fine Art in NewGenres, San Francisco Art Institute


Exhibitions/Performances

2015 Show and Tell Pop Up,1600 Meeting,Charleston,SC2014

2014 GAY, Longwood Art Gallery, Bronx, NY

KNOW WHO YOU ARE AT EVERY AGE, Bronx River Art Center at Bronx Art Space, Bronx,NY

The Reading Pod at The Farm Bar, Awendaw, SC

2013 The EMO Show, Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, New York, NY

MOMENTA ART SPRING BENEFIT 2013, Brooklyn, NY

Me Love You Long Time (MLYLT), Mills Gallery at Boston Center for the Arts, Boston,MA

2012 POP SOUK!,NewYork,NY

High Heel Walk Off for Model:Art in Odd Places, New York, NY

Paparazzi!, for 8 to 8:State of Creative Emergency, New York, NY

2006 New York Narratives, Oakland University Art Gallery, Rochester, MI

2003 Drawing Conclusions,Art Miami, Miami, FL

1999 Summer GroupShow,TerrainGallery,Newport,RI

3rd Annual Fixed Price Art Sale,San Francisco,CA

Tattooed and Decorated, Balazos Gallery, San Francisco,CA

1998 Greetings from Mirth,Terrain Gallery,San Francisco,CA

Skatelore Expo,Contemporary Arts Forum,Santa Barbara,CA

SOON,Terrain Gallery,San Francisco,CA

The Survey Show,E-S-P Gallery,San Francisco,CA

1997 NOW, E-S-P Gallery, San Francisco, CA

AllPro, Diego Rivera Gallery, San Francisco,CA

1996 Two Sided, Diego Rivera Gallery,San Francisco,CA

Curatorial

2015 (Perfect Lovers), Bronx Art Space,Bronx NY

Bibliography

2015 Contribution Kostas Murkudis Monograph published by Prestel (2collage/drawings)

“Perfect Lovers” in black and white, The Hunts Point Express http://brie.hunter.cuny.edu/hpe/2015/05/03/gallery-shows-perfect-lovers-in-black-and-white/

After The Pressure The Cock (ArtZine) published under the pseudonym Catherine Holly and sold a Printed Matter New York City

My Brother ist Not Daniel Richter My Father is Not Gehrhart (ArtZine) published under the
pseudonym Catherine Holly and sold at Printed Matter New York City

2012 Rafael Melendez,Visualizing Works on Paper, My Small Story:Over 300 New York Stories
https://mysmallstory.wordpress.com/2012/01/18/rafael-melendez-visualizing-works-on-paper/

Golden Boy Issue#1, #2 and #3 in collaboration with Adam Hendricks

2011 RAFAEL MELENDEZ: MOCKUMENTARY Art Book Guy
http://artbookguy.com/rafael-melendez-mockumentary_558.html

Chauncey Chat with East Village Artist Extraordinaire Rafael T. Melendez
http://www.houseofdandridge.com/chauncey-chat-with-east-village-artist-extraordinaire-rafael-tmelendez/

Awards

1994 Sobel Merit Scholarship,San Francisco Art Institute
1995 Sobel Merit Scholarship,San Francisco Art Institute
1996 Sobel Merit Scholarship,San Francisco Art Institute

Commissions

2002 Site Specific Drawing, Private Residence, Reston, VA

 








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