Mellaney Roberts

As a Coloured person living in South Africa, in the collective memory of my story, I always felt like an invisible individual trapped between Black and White classifications. Therein lies an untold story of being somewhere between and not represented, creating the feeling of ‘not-belonging’. Through constructing narratives of lived experience, hybrid communities can challenge dominant stereotypes and subvert discourses of otherness and difference.

My body of work focuses on presenting ceramic sculptures depicting the fluid shift of boundries. I use borders as a metaphor for the way that our identity transforms as we experience various spaces. My ceramic sculptural forms are often cut, pierced, or demarcated showing the divisions in cultural differences. The divisions emphasise how the parameters of identity are often blurred and how an object’s placement in space can reference things other than itself, acting as a memory trigger.

The works also explore the elements of form, space and time, presenting the viewer with a shifting perspective on materiality. My intuitive response to clay enlists the rich and multileveled reference that ceramics has as a medium, evoking the permanence and impermanence associated with time.

Mellaney Roberts
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