“The Tales We Tell” (digital collage) Emanating painterly vibes, these collages, brought to life through strictly digital means, take on the social justice–racial and gender inequality perspective that is presently challenging traditional thinking regarding fairy tales in particular and art in general by eschewing the recontextualization of princesses and kings, little girls, maids and witches in favor of mirrors, slippers, apples, beds, hooks, and fish tales that are wrapped in flowers and made to float serenely in vibrant shades of green as a stand-in for what is truly timeless, evolving yet fundamentally unchangeable, much like nature, ever present and relatable to any and all at a deep and instinctual level.
“Who’s Collecting All the Tears We Shed?” (analogue collage) Here is the artist operating in her own space and time, expressing herself to herself alone by taking a pair of scissors to work. Individually cut and glued, each element, no matter how small, serves as a brushstroke to achieve a balanced composition guided by color. Inspired by Hans Arp’s and Joan Miro’s adaptation of biomorphic forms, Wassily Kandinsky’s joyful automatism, and Henri Matisse’s approach to collage as a painting, these handmade paper collages explore the potential for unique compositional relationships that result from the unfussy yet harmonious arrangement of organic forms and non-representational and figurative elements in order to expand on the state of a woman living in a world that makes her feel like not enough–or too much–at all times, a world that keeps her in the in-between of who she is and who she thinks she needs to be.
Known mostly for her unique brand of mixed media on canvas, Odeta Xheka is an artist, writer, poet, and debuting picture book creator. Her story parallels the highs and lows that countless women artists face as they negotiate the demands of daily pressures of the family with the aspiration to make ambitious art.
As a woman, fated to be narrated rather than be the narrator, she makes art to reclaim her voice. Art is the antithesis of speechlessness!