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Paula Salas

Born in 1982 in Chile
Lives and works in Amsterdam, Holland

In my practice I explore the ways in which local communities construct their identity. I integrate tools from disciplines such as cartography, anthropology, ethnographic portraiture and colonial archives. My aim is to expose and challenge the historical beliefs ruling the life of the local societies that I get involved with. To achieve this goal I work in a cultural and site-specific mode. Based on people’s daily patterns, especially the ways they use the space and objects around them, I build tailored systems of investigation. Thus, for each project I choose a medium that exploits the local imagery and is also engaging for the primary public. In this search for adequate instruments, painting has a privileged status. Pictorial representation is the common ground where the spectators and me meet up to dialogue. Moreover, in my projects painting provides a frame within which I experiment with diverse genres, techniques and media while keeping a legible visuality. This hybridity makes my artworks formally diverse, but they all are underlain by the same theme: the formation and transformation of cultural identity.

2012-13 – Ejercicios de Posibilidad, “En la otra cuadra”, Galería Gabriela Mistral, Santiago, Chile
2012 – Residency To have one’s cake and eat it too, SYB Kunsthuis, Beetsterzwaag, The Netherlands
2012 – Residency project “Brought by the Rivers”, Upominki project space, Rotterdam, The Netherlands 2011 – Artistic research project Our own other: an Archive for the Future – Tropen Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2011 – Confinement Room: a story about following intructions –  Guest Room project, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
2010 – Cochinilla – Stuart Gallery, Santiago, Chile
2010 – 2009 – Serie: Retratos, Matucana 100 Cultural Center, Santiago, Chile
2009 – BIOPODER. Políticas del cuerpo y su representación, La Esclava Video and photographs – Vértice Gallery, Lima, Perú
2009 – La Esclava – is shown in the European Media Art Festival EMAF, Osnabrück, Germany
2008 – Cabeza de Ratón: III Concurso de Arte Joven, with Secuencia Carolina –  Visual Arts Museum MAVI, Santiago, Chile
2008 – La Esclava is shown in the International Contemporary Art Festival of Barcelona: BAC, Spain
2007 – Agua corriente (in collaboration with Doris Viejo) – Santiago Metropolitan Gallery, Chile

This post is also available in: Spanish