(WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass). – Mezze Bistro + Bar will host an art opening on Monday, July 11, featuring selected works from Berkshire-based artists Melissa Matsuki Lillie and Sean Riley, from 5 to 7 pm. The event is free and open to the public, with light snacks and a cash bar. The current Mezze Bistro exhibit is a combination of existing contemporary works exploring paintings and textiles using a variety of textures and patterns.
Melissa Matsuki Lillie’s artwork references natural and manmade forms using a personal visual language of vibrant colors and complex layers to reflect the macroscopic and microscopic world. Her paintings evoke a sense of space that has been flattened and layered, revealing strands and structures of line and color interacting fluidly with hidden landscapes. Elusive reference points can often be discerned through the interwoven layers. Lillie received her BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art. Originally from Maryland, she now lives in the Berkshires.
Sean Riley received his BFA in Painting from the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston, MA, in 1999. He then went onto the University of Pennsylvania to receive his MFA in Painting in 2004. Upon graduating from UPenn, Riley was awarded the Joan Mitchell Foundation MFA Grant. Since 2004, Riley has been in several group exhibitions in New York, Philadelphia and North Adams, Mass. His first solo-exhibition, Everything is OK, was held in June 2010 at MCLA Gallery 51 in North Adams. Over the next year he will be a resident at Yaddo in Saratoga Springs, N.Y,, and exhibiting his work in Charleston, S.C., and in Troy, N.Y.
The artwork selected for Mezze comes from Riley’s latest body of work that takes inspiration from an extended stay in Italy as well as a fascination with quilt patterns. As part of his artistic practice, Riley is now making quilts in addition to paintings. He currently lives and works in North Adams, Mass.