Sigh V. Meltingstar’s mixed-media collages give the impression of an awe-inspiring psychedelic simultaneity. They offer an impression of the collective unconscious rioting up in an explosion of disturbing color and sparkle. When asked, Meltingstar remarks that a major inspiration for his work is the scientific fact that “all the matter in the universe was created inside stars. We were created inside stars. They’re our parents.”
The collages constellate a sense of urgent meaning which seems to envelop everything that comes within their presence. Meltingstar’s artwork gathers up the sparkly throw-a-ways of consumer society: broken glass, Lisa Frank stickers, sequins, rhinestones, cheap plastic beads— and out of them makes something religiously grand.
Reclaiming discarded materials for the purpose of art isn’t a new move in the world of modern aesthetics. What’s distinctive about Meltingstar’s work is the sense of sheer holy magnetism it achieves
Which is to say, the collages don’t look like “art” as we’ve come to know it—they look like talismans and catalysts. They’re not decorations or entertainments. They’re provocations with visionary energy, more like the hypnogogic prints of William Blake or the hyper-surreal canvases of Hieronymous Bosch than anything else.
In Meltingstar’s work, there’s a force crying out “all that glitters is gold” and this force insists on the total worthiness of everything shiny and color-saturated to express the divine advent of what is both unbearably alien and dearly familiar.
The layered and multi-dimensional collages capture with consistency and variety the intensity of life-altering night-time dreams.
There’s an aura of fresh revelation surrounding everything Meltingstar creates. His works reference a variety of religious traditions (two collages are re-touched freak-out rainbow versions of portraits of the Virgin Mary; the Hindu monkey god, Hanuman, sits enshrined at the top of one collage, almost indistinguishable from the surrounding pantheon of Lisa Frank sticker deities around him).
Yet the mysticism imparted by the pieces speaks primarily in the emergent cosmogonic language of the grade school playground. Specifically, in a grade school playground inflected and permeated by the demands of a primeval forest. And really, isn’t that just what you’ve always wanted?
Sigh Meltingstar’s work can be seen during Unblurred, First Fridays at The Wherehouse, 4810 Penn Avenue.