Esperanza Mayobre

I invent stories that question problems that for the most part have no answers. The themes that I explore are those that we generally do not want to talk about. I employ a variety of visual formats by creating works from disparate elements that reflect the compartmentalization and varied nature of our lives.

I create fictive laboratory spaces. Insert the role of a hero, writing a role for myself in the work. Use light as a metaphor for birth. I make drawings to create infinite lines. Candles to create lines of light. Give money away to talk about the third world countries debt. Dust to convert illegal to legal aliens. Elegant graffiti to portray urban chaos.

The main undercurrents in my work come from the relationship with my home country of Venezuela. The political and economical situation of this once rich oil-state country has dramatically and drastically changed.   Migration and displacement have become a humanitarian crisis.   Hyperinflation, medicine and food scarcity, the norm.

To work with Venezuela as a theme, I use memory, the news, photos and artifacts. I create narratives and allegories that become visual forms. Gold bricks as a metaphor of the destruction of a country. From the ecological devastation of nature by the gold extraction and the corruption of the government to sell as they please the financial reserves of the nation. Rusted fans as TV antennas. That look like tropical Duchampian functional objects that were made by the ingenious local inhabitants of rural areas near the southeast coastline. These antennas have been the main source for access to media since the arrival of television to the area. Nowadays a media controlled by the government, the programming is based on political propaganda of the current regime. En el mar la vida es más sabrosa my nostalgia for the tropics has been encapsulated in an institutional museum vitrine that has resting on top an indigenous warao hat as an artifact.   In Tropical Landscape with its caution do not enter sign I relate to the current reality of a territory that has become absurdly dangerous and inhospitable almost by chance, with no logical reason.

It is in this context that the country’s problems gets worse and worse by the hour. With no hope or signs of immediate solution or recovery, migration has become a way to escape the humanitarian crisis. From the current political rhetoric worldwide and discrimination, we know this solution can become a problem.

I have been working with the theme of immigration since my arrival to the United States in 2000. It started in a much more simple way: to tell my personal story. I would had never imagined when I made Immigrant of the Month, Welcome to Yunaited Estai, Tierra a la Vista (Land Ho) and Immigration Services – Virgin of Hope, that immigrants and refugees would be on the front news page as they are now. My approach then was to explore the absurdity in the idea of the quest for a new world, the immigrant as an explorer or discoverer, not as the current reality, the immigrant as survivor.

As a visual artist I did not start with the intention to make art that was so politically centered, in fact I am trained as a cabinetmaker. Drawing and making sculptures is what I enjoy doing the most. When the place you come from is falling apart, where your family and your childhood friends live, and eventually become an immigrant yourself, is there any other option than to respond to reality? My work allows me to be home without being home.

 

EDUCATION

2005
Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture Skowhegan ME

2003
School of the Museum of Fine Arts (SMFA) Fifth Year Certificate Boston MA 2002
SMFA Diploma Boston MA
1999
Instituto Artesanal de la Colonia Tovar (IACT) Caracas Venezuela
1997
Instituto ProDiseño Escuela de Comunicación Visual Caracas Venezuela

SOLO EXHIBITIONS

2017

I cannot connect nostalgia with current reality Westchester Community College State University of New York Valhalla New York
2013
Nada se trata de nada todo se trata de mucho Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center Buffalo New York

2012

Tierra a la Vista Centro Cultural Chacao Caracas Venezuela Dibujos Galeria Beatriz Gil Caracas Venezuela
2011
Accumulations Solar East Hampton New York

2010

Esperanza Mayobre Galería Fernando Zubillaga Caracas Venezuela SELECTED EXHIBITIONS

2019

How the light gets in Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art.Cornell University Ithaca NY (upcoming)
Striking Gold: Fuller at Fifty Fuller Craft Museum Brockton MA (upcoming)
Whose Vestiges Subsist The Clemente New York NY

Supported at its Ends—Hanging by its Weight The Loisaida Center New York NY 2018

Executive (Dis)Order: Art, Displacement & the Ban Queens Museum Queens, New York Retrato de un paisaje Sivori Museum Buenos Aires Argentina

The Mushroom Show 1124 County Route Craryville New York For Freedoms Henrique Faria Fine Art New York NY Arte/Facto ProFoundation Artist Run Space Brooklyn NY Flat Touch. Steuben Gallery / Pratt Brooklyn NY Deconstrucción Sala 37 Aniversario / Arco Madrid Spain 2017

Illuminations III: Activism / Chapter: Venezuela Henrique Faria Fine Art. Miami Biennale Miami FL
Building and Rebuilding Asylum Arts / We Repair the World Brooklyn New York
Hold These Truths No Longer Empty at the Nathan Cummings Foundation New York NY

Crossing Borders John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage Brown University Providence Rhode Island
Tracing Trajectories: Selections from the Hoggard/Wagner Collection Trestle Projects Brooklyn New York

Crossing Borders Periphery Gallery Pawtucket Rhode Island
Immigrant of the Month Covert Operations Gallery Brooklyn New York
Broad Stripes and Bright Stars Elly Center of Contemporary Art New Haven Connecticut Almost home: Between Staying and Leaving a Phantom Land Dorsky Gallery Long Island City New York
Post-magic symbiosis Matteawan Gallery Beacon NY
2016
Smack Mellon 20th Anniversary Show Smack Mellon Brooklyn NY
Base 6 st Brooklyn NY
Moderno, El Arte De Vivir Rosalux Berlin Germany
Moderno, El Arte De Vivir Museum Centro Pepe Espaliu Córdoba Spain
Recap: thirty years of momenta art Momenta Brooklyn NY
Common Room Lesley Heller New York NY
Portrait of a Landscape Shirley Fiterman Art Center New York NY
Magical (un) Real: Entranced Land Momenta Brooklyn NY
Revel Kunstraum Gallery Brooklyn NY
Antropocene Markers Likky Ruph Project Space Brooklyn NY
Project 10 Spring Break New York NY
Drawing for Sculpture TSA Gallery Brooklyn NY
2015
Into the Woods Morris-Warren Gallery New York NY
Sintaxis Sala Mendoza Caracas Venezuela
Published by the artist International Print Center New York NY
Múltiples Sala Mendoza Caracas Venezuela
Made in USA TSA Gallery Brooklyn NY
ArtMotion Sala Mendoza New York NY
Behind the White Walls Brooklyn Fire Proof Brooklyn NY
Ensign Sgr A* Radiator Arts Long Island City NY
2014
Treasure Island Lower East Side Printshop New York NY
Panorámica. Arte Emergente en Venezuela. 2000-2012. Sala TAC Trasnocho Cultural Caracas Venezuela
In and Out of Context Lower East Side Printshop New York NY
This is what sculpture looks like Postmasters Gallery New York NY
Gráfica Mercantil. Indagación y seguimiento Sala Mercantil Caracas Venezuela
2013
Housewarming: Notions of Home from the Center of the Universe BRIC Brooklyn New York Migratory Marks Visual Arts Center Summit New Jersey
Of Hope and Madness MACLA San Jose California
For which it stands The Lodge Gallery New York NY
In the Details Maxon Mills Wassaic NY
Epic Fail Storefront Brooklyn NY
Mano segura no se tranca Present Company Brooklyn New York
Thanks Lu Magnus New York NY
Value Added: Artists’ Perspectives on the Meaning of Worth The College of New Jersey New Jersey
2012
Intersection in the mapping process University of Maryland College Park Maryland
Hi Jack! Jack Shainman Gallery New York NY

Transforming Function I LMCC Art Center New York NY Transforming Function II LMCC Conrad Gallery New York NY CTRL+P Arlington Arts Center Arlington Virginia
Divided by Zero Art Gate Gallery New York NY

Ñew York Museo de las Américas Washington DC
This Side of Paradise Andrew Freedman Home / No Longer Empty Bronx NY
2011
Tuning Incheon Biennial Incheon South Korea
Faraway Neighbor Flux Factory Long Island City NY
Prolonged Engagement Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts New York NY
2010
smART Freedom Tower Miami Dade College Miami FL
Domestic City Kid Yellin Brooklyn NY
2009
Interventions: Severance Package Museo de Arte de El Salvador / MARTE El Salvador Moving Money The Gallatin Galleries New York NY
2008
Moving Money SAC Gallery Stony Brook University Stony Brook New York
Metro Poles: Art in Action Bronx River Art Center / BRAC Bronx New York Reflect/Refract Rich Gallery London England
What can brown do for you? Galería Solar East Hampton NY
X Salón CANTV Jóvenes con FIA Centro Cultural CorpBanca Caracas Venezuela
2007
The Feminine Mystique Jersey City Museum Jersey City NJ
Legal Aliens Spaces Gallery Cleveland OH
2006
Multiplex Smack Mellon Brooklyn NY
Dibujos Galería Fernando Zubillaga Caracas Venezuela
IX Salón CANTV Jóvenes con FIA Centro Cultural CorpBanca Caracas Venezuela
If a cat gives birth to kittens Roebling Hall Brooklyn NY
Inner Limits Abrons Arts Center Henry Street Settlement New York NY
2005
To Whom It May Concern Cuchifritos New York NY
Venezueland Gallery Galou Brooklyn NY
AIM 25 The Bronx Museum of the Arts Bronx New York
2004
Republicans like me MIT Cavs Boston MA
Republicans like me Parlour Projects Brooklyn New York
Traveling Scholars Museum of Fine Arts Boston Boston MA

AWARDS

2013

The Jerome Foundation Visual Arts Travel and Study Grant Saint Paul MN 2008
NYU Visiting Artist Program New York NY
Honorable Mention XI Salón CANTV Jóvenes con FIA Caracas Venezuela 2007

Nominee Art Matters Awards New York NY 2003
Traveling Scholars Award Boston MA

RESIDENCIES AND FELLOWSHIPS

2016

International Studio & Curatorial Program (ISCP) New York NY 2015
Process Space Lower Manhattan Cultural Council New York NY 2014

Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship Washington D.C.
Lower East Side Printshop Keyholder Residency Program New York NY 2011
Smack Mellon Studio Artist Residency Brooklyn NY
2008
Workspace, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, New York NY
2005
Skowhegan Fellowship Skowhegan ME
Artist in the Marketplace Fellowship at the Bronx Museum AIM New York NY

BOOKS AND PUBLICATIONS

2018

Vector 8 Guest Editor Ellie Krakow. New York, NY pg. 166-173
2017
Recap: thirty years of momenta art. 1986-2016. Selected Exhibitions New York, NY pg. 65 Crossing Borders
2015
Made in USA / Some Parts Imported Brooklyn, NY
2013
Victor Carreño El tránsito vacilante: Miradas sobre la cultura contemporánea venezolana New York, NY pg.131
Vicente Lecuna Tierra a la Vista Centro Cultural Chacao pg. 5-12 Caracas, Venezuela
Lorena Gonzalez Tierra a la Vista y obra reciente (dibujos) Centro Cultural Chacao pg.1-4 Caracas, Venezuela
John Massier Esperanza Mayobre Nada se trata de nada todo se trata de mucho Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center Buffalo, NY
2012
Felix Suazo Panorámica Arte Emergente enVenezuelan 2000 / 2012 Caracas, Venezuela pg. 132-135
Vista Contemporary Works by Latinamerican Artists University of Maryland University College pg.24
2011
José Ruiz In the wake of 2013 The Museum of Korea Emigration History 2011 Incheon Biennale Tunning Exhibition South Korea pg. 130-137

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY

2018

Lori Waxman Not the same old immigrant story as hard questions are asked at 6018 North Gallery Chicago Tribune. September 20

2017

Alejandra Villasmil Artishock Esperanza Mayobre. Entre Dos Culturas, Entre Nostalgia y Realidad. Nov 20
Felix Suazo Tráfico Visual Tipos y contratipos. Segunda parte. Caracas Venezuela 2016

Magical (Un)Real: Entranced Land Artishock Santiago Chile 2014

Felix Suazo Tráfico Visual Venezuela Outside (nota) Caracas Venezuela
Priscilla Frank Huffington Post 16 Contemporary Women Sculptors You Should Know Washington DC
2013
Thomas Micchelli Hyperallergic Vanishing Virtuosity: Seven Artists, Seven Drawings November 23 New York
Enrico Gomez Wagmag Brooklyn Art Guide Housewarming November 1 Brooklyn New York Sarah Cascone Art in America Creative Time’s Sandcastles Return to Rockaway Beach August 13
Lisa Blackmore ArtNexus Amalia Caputo and Esperanza Mayobre pg.89 June-August
Laura Salazar nycARTscene Interview: Esperanza Mayobre July
Art and Ageism: The Decisive Eye of Fellow Artists NY Arts Magazine Vol 20, N.3, Summer Issue New York
J. Tim Raymond Artvoice Esperanza Mayobre at Hallwalls Issue v12n21 Buffallo New York
2012
Andreina Martinez El Nacional Amalia Caputo y Esperanza Mayobre conectadas por la añoranza pg. 5 Noviembre 22 Caracas Venezuela
Dubraska Falcón El Universal La memoria visual de Amalia Caputo y Esperanza Mayobre Noviembre Caracas Venezuela
Noah Dillon The Brooklyn Rail HiJack! pg 39 November Brooklyn New York
Benjamin Sutton Artinfo One-Line Reviews: Our Staff’s Pithy Takes on “The Double Dirty Dozen (& Friends),” “HiJack!,” and Other Gallery Shows August 25
Allison Meier Hyperallergic Rediscovering Paradise in the Bronx May 3
Ryan Reft Tropics of Meta Nueva York: Politics, Art, and the Transnational Big Apple March 21 Eva Mendoza Chandas Round Trip NY #22 Esperanza Mayobre. RoundtripNY March 12
2011
Laura Bardier Arte al día Prolonged Engagement 135 pg. 139 Miami,June-July
2010
Lorena González El Nacional El Papel Herido Esto es lo que Hay May 4 ,Caracas Venezuela Dubraska Falcón El Universal La ciudad de Mayobre April 23 Caracas
Marjorie Delgado Aguirre El Nacional Esperanza Mayobre arma y desarma la retícula de su memoria urbana April 24 Caracas Venezuela
Carmen Victoria Méndez Tal Cual Paisajes contra la pared April 23, Caracas Venezuela
2009
Jose Ruiz Bomb Artist on Artist New York Winter Issue
Intercambio Cultural El Diario de Hoy El Salvador Septiembre 2
2008
El Nacional Cinco Artistas Venezolanos Muestran Miradas Reflectantes Caracas October 14 e-misférica Performance and Politics in the Americas Vírgenes Viajeras / Traveling Virgins Hemispheric Institute April
2007
Douglas Max Free Times Utter Strangers in Strange Land Cleveland OH Feb. 7-13
2006
Maria Elena González Velvetpark # 11 Curator’s Corner Artist Maria Elena González selects Esperanza Mayobre pg. 38-39 New York, Summer Issue
Karina Sainz Borgo El Nacional Disculpe,¿quiso decir fuera de control? El Nacional Papel Literario pg. 4 Caracas July 15
Gabriela Rangel Arte al Día Notes on Exile Self-exile and Immigration in Venezuelan Art 115, pgs. 44-51 Miami July
Lilian Dagher Zeta Creadores Emergentes Zeta # 1568 pg. 34-35 Caracas June 30
2005
Christopher Howard CAA News Good Business is the Best Art: Artist in the Marketplace Volume 30 #6 New York November

Holland Cotter The New York Times Latino Art, and Beyond Category New York September 1 2004
Nick Stillman Artforum New York Critics Pick Republican Like Me New York September

CURATORIAL

2016

Magical (un) Real: Entranced Land Momenta Brooklyn NY 2013
Mano segura no se tranca Present Company Brooklyn NY 2006

International Globus Dislocator Roebling Hall Brooklyn NY

PROJECTS

201

El AMO La Nacional New York NY (upcoming)
2018
A drone was knocked by a toilet paper Vector 8 New York NY
2016
Is Domino Social Practice? + Screening of Agarrando Pueblo Momenta Brooklyn NY 2015
Artists’ Cities / Cisneros Collection
2014
Postcards to Venezuela Creative Time Reports New York NY
2013
Second Annual Artist Sandcastle Competition Creative Time Brooklyn NY

LECTURES / ARTIST TALKS

2018

Artist’s Eye: Esperanza Mayobre Brooklyn Museum Brooklyn New York
2017
Art and Power – From Museum to Real World New York University NYU King Juan Carlos I of Spain Center New York
I cannot connect nostalgia with current reality Westchester Community College State University of New York Valhalla New York
Moholy-Nagy y las cargas de la producción. El arte del siglo XX y las prácticas contemporáneas Espacio Mercantil Caracas Venezuela
2016
Local, Connected, and Creative: New Approaches to Community Building BRIC Brooklyn NY 2014
Esperanza Mayobre AICAD New York Studio Residency Program New York NY
2013
Esperanza Mayobre The Lodge Gallery New York NY
Esperanza Mayobre Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center Buffalo New York
2009
Esperanza Mayobre International Center of Photography ICP New York NY
2008
Maria Elena Gonzalez and Esperanza Mayobre Skowhegan Talks Artist Space New York NY 2007
Conversatorio La Carnicería Caracas Venezuela
2006
Colirio Museum of Fine Arts Boston Boston MA