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CATALINA SWINBURN

Catalina Swinburn (Santiago, 1979) has been working with the geopolitical concept of displacement. Her practice of weaving vintage documents paper sheets as support became a manifest of political disagreement by using documents of displaced patrimonial treasures, or musical scores of operas with exile thematics, or geopolitical maps. Her weaving exercise is trespassing by a diasporic feeling with a poetic and subtle aesthetic. She persues to rescue ancestrals rituals related to sacred places, ancestral geography and  original memory.

Catalina’s work translate into key messages and universal concerns such as: sustainability, identity, gender equality and globalisation underlining the connections of the Global South throughout history. The use of weave and vintage documets are used by her as a vital and dynamic language for raising awareness both physically and conceptually while aiming to strengthen the integration between various communities from the Global South in making reference to female resilience.

The work of Catalina Swinburn operates on a shifting border she establishes between cult and artistic practice. Her exploration of different visual media –video, installation, photography and performance results in often metaphoric and symbolic manipulations, which challenge reality as a representation of a world the artist is living in. Her practice summarises her identity as a female Latin American artist in an era with a multiplicity of encounters and realities.

The starting point of the series of paper works, is an investigation related to displaced archaeological pieces that were taken from their original place, and travelled to different institutions around the world to be exhibited as a power emblem. These skins – with their various folds and contingent aspects – are the place of fissures and traces bearing witness to memory. The process in which Catalina Swinburn creates her interpersonal work emphasises on the human necessity of the conditions of being, loss and destruction.  Regenerating these narratives articulates for the artist both a sense of urgency and a mode of resistance.

The artwork is therefore activated by the artist’s position as both fabricator and performer of the sculpture. This could be seen as a metaphor for resistance, where woven narratives are portrayed as a substitute for the silence of women throughout history.

Swinburn’s sensational sculptures are produced by intricately weaving pages of texts together into constructed robust structures. Through this labour intensive approach, the material transforms from delicate pages of books to garment-like arrangements that the artist then wears as a cloak to perform in, as such her works undergo an important process of transformation and recycling.

The recycling aspect in this work happens through many dimensions: content, form and process. Following her performances, the works become sculptures with a history of their own and result in an amalgamation of history and memory.

Textiles are eloquent expressions of women´s concern with cultural tradition and transmutation,  and are recognized as fundamental to studies of gender, social identity, status, exchange and modernization. Weave, tends to demarcate a suspension of ordinary existance and are among the most visible signs of sacred space and sacred roles. Textiles have played a prominent role in exchanges between the West and indigeous peoples throuhout the world. There is also an essential correspondence between the realms of agriculture and weaving, an isomorphic relationship. There are profund, conceptual, linguistic and religious connections between them two.

While textile production is rooted in a specific time and place, textiles become objects that function within a system of exchange. The pages from archival books, ripped, folded and transformed into coded messages already destined to such a purpose by the folding , mark the line that determines the scope of an enigma. The weaving thus restructures the ruins of the book to prepare them for an unimaginable role, as the singular components of a new object: a blanket that can be used as a garment or a shroud.  The woven  piece is transformed into a portable investiture.  Porting a cloak its aluded to both female and male atributes; its a dressing, imposing and ritual piece that acts as and gendered identities on the frontier. The Cloak is also a talisman from harm, keeping one safe and secure throughout transitions.

By using weaving as a metaphor for resistance, this works on paper bring us closer to our cultural identity and offer an alternative view of the function of art as a vehicle of consciousness by meeting  various forms of knowledge; oppening a dialogue between conservatism and innovation, between continuity and transmutation.

 

Catalina Swinburn

Born 1979. Santiago, Chile BA in Fine Arts. Catholic University of Chile. Chile Lives & Works Buenos Aires, Argentina & London, UK

EXHIBITIONS

Archaic Contingency

Selma Feriani Gallery
Cromwell Place. London, UK
2020

Matters of Material

Curated by Dina Nasser-Khadivi
Christie´s, London, UK
2020

Untitled

Selma Feriani Gallery
Sidi Bou Said, Tunis
2020

Viaje hacia la Luz

Curated by Thiago Verdi
Galeria Aninat
Santiago, Chile
2020

We all need Opera

Mam Contemporary Art Salzburg
Salzburg
2020

Imagen del Texto

Galeria de Arte Isabel Aninat
Santiago, Chile
2019

des/composure

Video, 6.48 min
Bienal de Artes Mediales, Santiago, Chile
2019

no land

Art Basel Hong Kong
Selma Feriani Gallery, Hong Kong, China
2019

NARRATIVES OF DISPLACEMENT

Selma Feriani Gallery
Sidi Bou Said, Tunis
2018

FISSURES

Selma Feriani Gallery
Sidi Bou Said, Tunis
2016

THE PERFECT BOUNDARY

CENTRO CULTURAL MATTA
Buenos Aires, Argentina
2016

MIGRACIONES (en el) ARTE CONTEMPORANEO

MUNTREF / MUSEO DE INMIGRANTES
Buenos Aires, Argentina
2015

PORTRAIT REDUXE

CENTRO CULTURAL MATTA
Buenos Aires, Argentina
2016

ARQUEOLOGIA ANTICIPADA*

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galería Isabel Aninat, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION
2013
*AWARDED BEST EXHIBITION 2013, CHILE.

PORTRAIT

PAINFUL TIMES
ANINAT & SWINBURN
Selma Feriani Gallery, London
2013

INDULGENCES

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Selma Feriani Gallery, London
2012

UTOPIA

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Mount Street Church, London
INSTALATION
2012

LOST PARADISE

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Collahusi Foundation, Iquique, Chile
INSTALATION
2011

ART OF TELLING TALES

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Artnexus Space, Bogota, Colombia
2011

EL QUE NO ARRIESGA NO PASA EL
RIO

ANINAT & SWINBURN
About Change, World Bank, Washington, USA
PERFORMATIVE PHOTOGRAPH
2008

IN GOD WE TRUST

ANINAT & SWINBURN
DANGEROUS LIASONS CURATED BY SEBASTIEN GOKALP
Monnaie Du Paris, France
2011

LUJOSO SILENCIO

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galeria Cecilia Gonzalez, Lima, Peru
PERFORMATIVE PHOTOGRAPH & INSTALATION
2011

IN GOD WE TRUST

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Bolsa de Arte, Brasil
INSTALATION
2009

PAINFUL TIMES

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galeria Isabel Aninat, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION & PHOTOGRAPH
2010

STATU QUO

ANINAT & SWINBURN
CCU, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION & PERFORMANCE
2010

IN GOD WE TRUST

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Museo de Arte Contemporaneo, Chile
INSTALATION
2009

HOLY WATER

ANINAT & SWINBURN
PERFORMATIVE PHOTOGRAPHY
2009

SESGOS MÍSTICOS

ANINAT & SWINBURN
CENTRO DE EXTENSION UCC
Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION, PHOTOGRAPHY, VIDEO
2008

NOVUM MEMORAE

ANINAT & SWINBURN
CENTRO DE EXTENSION UCC
Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION, PHOTOGRAPHY, VIDEO
2008

LUGARES COMUNES

ANINAT & SWINBURN
PUBLIC SPACE PROYECT-VITACURA
Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION
2008

NO HAY PEOR CIEGO QUE EL QUE
NO QUIERE VER

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galeria Isabel Aninat, Santiago, Chile
PERFORMATIVE PHOTOGRAPH
2008

SINCE 11.09

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Museo de Artes Visuales, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION
2007

ALTAR DE SACRIFICIO

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Museo de Arte Contemporaneo, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION
2007

IN CONTEMPLATIO

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galeria 5006, Buenos Aires
PERFORMATIVE PHOTOGRAPH
2006

OBITUARIO

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galeria Animal, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION & PERFORMANCE
2004

IN MEMORIAM

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galeria Animal, Santiago, Chile
PERFORMANCE
2004

OPERACIÓN LIMITE AMBULATORIO*

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Concurso Delta Airlines
PERFORMANCE, VIDEO AND INSTALATION
2005
*WINNER OF DELTA AIRLINES CONTEST

PIEZAS DE COLECCIÓN

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galeria Isabel Aninat, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION
2005

IN MEMORIAM 12.05.04 – 05.06.04

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galeria Valenzuela & Klenner, Bogota, Colombia
PERFORMANCE
2004

EN MEMORIA

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galeria Animal
INSTALATION – PERFORMANCE
2002

MEMORIA VELADA

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Galeria Animal, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION - PERFORMANCE
2002

NON SITE – EN MEMORIAM 13.11.02 &
8211; 07.12.02

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Corporación Cultural de Las Condes, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION
2003

FRAGMENTOS DEL OLVIDO

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Corporación Cultural de Las Condes, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION
2003

MEMORIA EN TRÁNSITO

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Fundación Telefónica, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION
2002

EN MEMORIA

ANINAT & SWINBURN
Kent Instalations, Santiago, Chile
INSTALATION
2002

COLLECTIONS

Pilar Citoler Foundation

Cordoba, Spain

Balanz Capital Collection

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Latin American Art Collection Artnexus

Bogotá, Colombia

CCU Art Collection

Santiago de Chile, Chile

ICC Contemporary Institute of Culture

Sao Paulo, Brazil

Arte Al Dia Collection

Miami, U.S.A.

Rosenblum Foundation

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Permanent Public Intervention

Vitacura Parks. Santiago de Chile, Chile

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