'The work of Maria Molteni is made possible through simultaneous devotions: from beekeeping to the Shakers, basketball to punk she cultivates her own complex approach to research and practice through an intuitive sense of spatial and psychic purpose. Self-described as a “neo(n)catholic‚” there is an almost religious aspect to her methodology, a part-formalist, part-social interventionist approach that is channeled through a humble resourcefulness and keen awareness of the current conditions that request for a dialogue to occur at all. From her giant iridescent inflatables to her crocheted basketball nets hung on abandoned hoops, her multi-faceted projects result in objects that are never static and instead serve as catalysts for new models of engagement.' -- Shalini Patel
Maria Molteni is a Nashville-to-Boston-based multimedia & performing artist, educator & organizer. Having studied Painting and Printmaking at Boston University, her practice sprung from formalist roots, and has grown to incorporate research, social engagement, and transdisciplinary experimentation. She playfully asks audiences to imagine her serving Black Mountain College as their PE coach... From fiber to found-object sculpture, textile to movement, performance to publication, she employs processes per their ability to manifest elaborate conceptual orchestration and formal satisfaction. Exploring iterations of sport, craft, feminism, spiritualism, animism, utopia, glossolalia and urban planning, she takes interest in standardized shapes and systems that influence our experience of spirituality through everyday functionality. Embellishing psychic energy in her environments, she seeks to expose unseen presences or predicaments, both cosmic and practical. Whether trapping such forces in wind-powered inflatables or posing a basketball net as a hoop’s phantom limb, she enjoys problem solving via traditional methods of craft- the tactile and tactical. Her works introduce original or absurdist processes as applied aesthetic solutions. In 2010 She launched the international collective New Craft Artists in Action. She co-founded the participatory project Festooning the Inflatable Beehive after working with beekeepers from across the country, including Treatment Free Apiculturalists Golden Rule.
Since living on the East Coast and traveling to the Philippines, she has also developed a passion for the sea, its mysterious ecosystems, and island lore. She has addressed her relationship to feminist and queer identities via Mermaids, Anglerfish, Moon Jellies and other nautical “species” in collaborative performances such as They Were Sunbeams..., Aurelian Baptism and There Are Plenty of Single Ladies in the Sea. She currently lives and works on the Boston Harbor in Midway Artist Studios and enjoys her membership of the Boston Rowing Center on her neighborhood's Fort Point Channel.