Melanie Munns was born and raised in Florida. Her earliest art influences were comic books and her grandmother's paintings. She earned her BFA in Illustration from Ringling College of Art and Design and her MFA in Sculpture from the University of Mississippi. She currently lives and works in Oxford, MS.
In truth, I created this work with no unifying theme, singular concept, or plot in mind. This is an accumulation of work I have created in my evenings and weekends off to express my own experiences and observations. My perspective is that of a young white female. While I am still processing childhood pains and nostalgia I also must face my own mortality, fertility, and sexuality as an adult woman. I primarily use myself and childhood photos as reference material to paint surreal portraiture that capture my feelings of conflict and nostalgia. Though there is beauty, sweetness, and sugary colors throughout my work there is also a tone of quietness or dreariness that can be perceived as sadness, strength, or aggression. I use midcentury motifs and cats to address gender expectations. While I wish to be desired and loved, I confront the unattainable and unrealistic restraints of the past. Although women have achieved much progress since the age of my grandparents the future promised has been revealed as a lie for my generation. Ten years ago when I first began to confront my fears of attaining a successful relationship I used cats as the popular symbolism to express spinsterdom. However with age the cat has expanded its meaning in my visual lexicon. It has evolved from a symbol of loneliness and failure into an empowering, ethereal creature that transcends time and space. Also I just really like cats and sometimes pink.