Monika Plioplyte is a multi-disciplinary artist merging printmaking, sculpture, performance, and photography. Born in Lithuania, Plioplyte grew up in Boston, MA. She holds a BFA in Printmaking from Massachusetts College of Art and Design (‘12) and an MFA in Print Media from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (‘19). She is a recipient of a number of awards and fellowships including the Genevieve McMillan-Reba Stewart Travel Award for printmakers, Blanche E. Colman Award, Professional Development Track Grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency, John W. Kurtich Foundation Travel Grant, The Center Program at Hyde Park Art Center, and Studios at MASS MoCa Residency. Plioplyte currently lives and works in Chicago, IL.
I work to deconstruct the encyclopedic nature and figure of the self, by blending printmaking, collage, performance, and photography. A central focus of my research is the occult and symbolic nature of Baltic Paganism and traditional folklore art, central to my upbringing. I make paper based wall works using drawings and risograph-printed-cut-outs of my body that mimic the ancient Pagan goddesses of Eastern Europe adapting traditional Lithuanian textiles and decorative symbols in the process. Some of the collage works, paper textiles, are activated by wearing the pattern and photographing myself in natural environments that resemble landscapes where I grew up and carry sentimental longing for a place or a past. The works are intimately linked to storytelling through ancient symbology, psychology of the body, personal rituals and the processes of the hand made.