Victoria Ravelo

April 7-10

Poceta de memoria (Well of memory)
Photocopy wheatpasted onto reclaimed wood

Aunque me pisen (detail)
Graphite, footprints and dirt on paper.

Artist Statement

I was born in Miami, Florida to Cuban exiles. Growing up as a first-generation American navigating various cultures and subcultures taught me to see the local with the eyes of the foreigner and the foreign with the eyes of the local.

My work reconciles this multiplicity of experiences utilizing abstraction to address the ways we (re)interpret and (re)make the world(s) we inhabit. It draws from personal memory and quotidian materials whose colonial antecedents are often forgotten. Its process is informed by Santería—an Afro-syncretic religion practiced by my own family—with a ritualistic relationship to symbols, natural and manmade objects with specific histories to materialize the invisible. Similarly, I am interested in bridging cultural spaces through the force of image, material, and space to make marginalized histories tangible.

Ultimately, I wish to question the construction of our neo-colonial identities and wish to complicate accepted notions of assimilation and hybridity by teasing apart the various influences that form our present. It is necessary work to bring awareness to the ways we as a people share similar spaces at once. To this end, it is an exercise in empathy; a muscle that is in constant danger of atrophy in a divisive cultural climate.