Crossing Cultures: Family, Memory and Displacement 3.0, my first curatorial project, opened this month at the beautiful and elegant Fort Point Art Gallery in the heart of Boston.
Crossing Cultures is an art exhibition about family, memory, displacement and identity from the point of view of five visual artists with roots in four continents: Astrid Reischwitz (Germany), Nilou Moochhala (India), Shabnam Jannesari (Iran), Claudia Ruiz Gustafson (Peru) and Vivian Poey (Mexico and Cuba). Through the use of vintage family photographs, and the use of different mediums: photography, mixed media and video, these artists uncover their family stories and create complex, multidimensional narratives to reflect upon what they have left behind while shifting countries and at the same time honoring and remembering family traditions and vanishing ways of life.
I am very honored to be one of the artists selected by Makeda Best, the curator of photography at the Harvard Art Museums to participate in Exposure 2020 at the Photographic Resource Center in Boston, MA. The reception is this Wednesday, October 7th at 7pm via Zoom. Please come join me and ask any questions you wish!
Last year I received a grant to work on a couple of art projects in my city of Framingham, MA. We were just about to start installation when the pandemic hit us. Now, I am happy to report that we are moving forward with the two art exhibitions! We have a new space: Project B Gallery at The Mill Contemporary Art in Framingham will be the venue for Under the Same Flag and Framingham: City of Dreams. We will also include a Community Write-In Wall where visitors can post poems, letters, notes, wishes and so on. I can't wait to bring this healing project to my community! Very grateful to the Framingham and to the Massachusetts Cultural Councils for this grant.
This month was the launch of A Yellow Rose Project a photographic collaboration of responses, reflections, and reactions to the 19th Amendment from over one hundred women across the United States. I am extremely grateful to founders Frances Jakubek and and Meg Griffiths for inviting me to be part of this project. In my work I drew inspiration from the life of activist Inez Milholland who fought for the right of women and the oppressed. I am also very grateful to actress and activist Judith Kalaora for personifying Inez for my project.
Pleased to be a Photolucida Critical Mass 2020 finalist for my project Maria! These are some of the comments about my work from the Jurors:
One of the most wonderful things that happened to me this year was this conversation with Peruvian photographer Ana De Orbegoso in which we talk about art, life, family and much more. Please take a moment to read and enjoy our stories on LENSCRATCH, an outstanding venue for the visual art community. You can read the interview here: http://lenscratch.com/2020/08/
I am happy to announce that my solo show is now up at the Multicultural Arts Center in Cambridge, MA until August 28th, 2020. The staff really surprised me by creating an amazing virtual gallery experience that you can access here: Virtual Gallery.
We are hopeful that some sort of reception could still happen before the end of the show.
I'm truly honored to have my newest series Maria included in the last issue of Fraction Magazine. Thanks to Leo Hsu for editing such a thoughtful selection of photos! Included in this issue are portfolios by photographers I have been admiring for a long time: Ross Mantle, Priya Kambli and Tomoya Imamura. View my feature here: Maria by Claudia Ruiz Gustafson.
Twenty years ago when I arrived to the US, I began collecting Black & White Magazine. I remember reading and re-reading the interviews and looking at the images over and over again. To see my work now featured in this gorgeous magazine fills me with joy. I am deeply grateful to writer George Slade for his thoughtful interview and interpretation and portrayal of my work. Read the essay here: Spotlight Feature.
"A sort of artistic enchantress, Claudia Ruiz Gustafson recounts her journey from Peru to the U.S. through 31 evocative photos and 11 texts that she calls her Historias Fragmentadas (Fragmented Stories). Reminiscent of the magical realism of Latin American authors, the Framingham-based artist casts a supernatural aura on her stories illustrated by vintage photos of her homeland, ... Boldly ambitious, Ruiz Gustafson infuses her own story with signs and symbols that link her past and present to create a personal mythology that opens her inner life to viewers – if they dare look." Review by Chris Bergeron, Metrowest Daily News
My entire series Historias fragmentadas is now part of the exciting art exhibition Family Circle, now on view at the Danforth Art Museum in Framingham until May 10th, 2020. The artists of “Family Circle” also include painters Jenny Carpenter and Jasmine Chen, photographers Lee Kilpatrick and Kristen Joy Emack and sculptors Lisa Barthelson and Mary Morazzi-Henderson. More info here: Family Circle.
I am thrilled that images from my latest series Poet of the Lake received the highest score by jurors Marcela Guerrero, Assistant Curator at Whitney Museum of American Art, New York and Jaime Cerón, Curator, Researcher and Art Critic, Bogota, Colombia and that three images will be showing at Agora Gallery in December 2019. This honor is dedicated to the memory of my late grandmother Elsa Nava. More info here: Latin American Competition Results.
BLUE 2019 exhibition at the Cambridge Arts! Thanks to juror Sarah Montross, Senior Curator at deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum-one of my favorite museums!-for selecting this very meaningful image from my series Historias fragmentadas. Join us for an opening reception on November 7th.
Very grateful to Karen E. Haas, Lane Curator of Photographs, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston who selected Qué solo me he quedado en esta sombra tan sóla (How lonely I am in this lonely shadow). This image along with other 58 images from photographers from 13 states will be showing at the Cambridge Art Association, University Place Gallery in October, 2019.
My first curatorial experience at the Cambridge Art Association. Crossing Cultures is a photo based art exhibit featuring four immigrant women artists (including myself) working on photography, mixed media and video installation. We incorporate our family photo archive into our art making process to tell the stories about our families and explore aspects of memory, loss, identity and displacement. More info here: http://www.cambridgeart.org/crossing-cultures/
Slideshow from Crossing Cultures Installation, Reception and Artist Talk:
Postcard for Crossing Cultures:
I will teaching a new class this upcoming winter. Revisiting the work of the pioneers: Julia Margaret Cameron, Alfred Stieglitz, Minor White, Martin Chambi, and others. And discussing interesting topics in photography: the concept of Equivalence, the use of symbolism in art and much more. Come join me!