I document my life in writing and am continually editing poetry together from cell phone notes, sketchbook pages and diary entries. These poems, in which the speaker longs to transcend heartbreak, Philadelphian ruthlessness, and the limitations of corporeality itself, are then made tactile as images and objects. In both the studio and gallery space, I play with written and physical material, transfiguring lived experience into a redeemed bedroom-pop dreamscape.

The objects that I make and the ways in which they are arranged are influenced by the Zoroastrian haftseen, a table of symbolic objects traditionally assembled in the household every spring equinox in celebration of the Persian New Year. In this context, normal objects like flowers, fruit, candles and mirrors are able to express complex themes of identity, luck, desire and transformation.

Although my work is ultimately mixed-media, glass and neon are the mediums I work within most. I am continually allured by the sharp softness, slick transparency, and rich color that glows from within these materials. Their formal qualities and ripe histories make them ideal vehicles for translating the poetic metaphors that carry my practice.

Victoria Ahmadizadeh Melendez holds an MFA in Craft/Material Studies from VCU and a BFA in Glass from Tyler School of Art and Architecture. She has been an Artist in Residence at Pilchuck Glass School, WheatonArts, MASS MoCA, and the STARworks Glass Lab. Her work has been exhibited at Glasmuseet Ebeltoft in Denmark, The National Glass Centre in England, DOX Centre for Contemporary Art in the Czech Republic and UrbanGlass in Brooklyn, NY, among other venues. Her sculptures which are transmutations of her personal writings have been included in New Glass Review #33 and #38, published by The Corning Museum of Glass.

Victoria is passionate about being an educator as well as an artist, and has taught at VCU, The University of the Arts, Ox-Bow School of Art and Artists’ Residency, UrbanGlass, and is currently adjunct faculty in the Glass Department at Tyler School of Art and Architecture. She has been a contributing writer to GASnews published by the Glass Art Society and GLASS: The UrbanGlass Art Quarterly. She resides in Philadelphia, PA, where she maintains her private studio and large plant collection.

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