Melinda was born in 1952 in New Orleans, Louisiana into an Acadian French family, and has experienced a uniquely rich culture of the South. Holding a love for religious art from an early age, and ever-learning how culture and art are related, she began to experiment with narrative and interpretive portraiture of historical women. Within her art form she seeks emotional tension that is an underlying interaction within her historical references. These faces are then woven into frank portrayals of human drama with subtle yet complex visual narrative prospective. Encouraged by professors and peers, she continued her advanced studies at Union Institute & University in Cincinnati, Ohio graduating in 2010 with a PhD in Arts & Sciences with a Specialization in Fine Arts & Visual Anthropology. Her career background has been in the importing and selling of period antiques, paintings and fine collectibles.
Her method of painting is a true form of a curious mix of Naïve’ Cultural Expressionism and Naïve’ Surrealism with an aim in art to convey the multi-layered meanings, symbolism and metaphoric association that involve themes of human social structures, allowing her viewer’s consciousness to become more heightened. She has also combined in her paintings the many cultures experienced firsthand in extensive worldly travels. Many paintings arise from personal photographic images taken over the many years in her quest for visual exploration within selected cultural studies.
The artists she most admires include Gauguin, Cezanne, Rousseau, and O’Keeffe. She strongly feels that the seductive flavor and boldly colored themes of Gauguin’s Tahitian paintings inspire not only the world we live in, but the diverse cultures that came before us. She believes deeply that art is medicine so powerful that it can revitalize the human spirit, promote self-esteem and give a joyful purpose in life.
Dr. English’s art is currently represented in Houston, Texas at The Heights Gallery, and Affaire d’Art International Fine Arts Gallery in Galveston, Texas