Cheering Crowds


Acrylic and varnish on wood

213 x 469 cm | 83 7/8 x 184 5/8 in


Claudia Martínez Garay’s work investigates objects’ journeys between their origin and destination, suggesting that the information accrued in these transitory spaces holds value and power. After encountering a ceramic vase at the Ethnological Museum of Berlin depicting a Moche prisoner moments before he was sacrificed, Claudia Martínez Garay began speculating how art can underline implications of cultural appropriation and contribute to creating narratives that challenge, and complicate, the discourse of domination and cultural hegemony. Death and sacrificial rituals were an important part of Moche society and cultures, and the archetype of prisoner – through its diverse transmutations – is explored in ÑUQA KAUSAKUSAQ QHEPAYKITAPAS/ I WILL OUTLIVE YOU (2017). The video is a form of personal and shared storytelling, with fact and fiction intersecting and blurring together. The timeline in the video shifts from the prisoner’s state of mind prior to his death to his childhood, to its transfiguration into a digital being, to its knowing incarceration as an artwork on display.

Using artifacts and their attributed narratives to investigate their origins and transformations, … imaywanpas quidakuwakmi … / … but you can stay with my stuff … (2017) presents ceramic objects as an installation in dialogue with these inquiries. The nuanced works behave as props, performing alongside one another, serving as an offering for an incomplete and broken face hanging on the wall that mirrors the prisoner in the film. Ceramic animals appear on the ground and atop other objects, painted corn sits in bowls with legs and feet, limb like forms attached to metal rods spring out of bricks. Interested in studying the object’s own surface and materiality, she sees the surface of ceramics as a product of the desert landscape – the original space where the objects symbolism is derived from. Each object has its own biography, its own history. While individual works are fragile and symbolic, together they form a collective that is powerful and analytical.

Claudia Martínez Garay (1983 Ayacucho, Perú) studied Printmaking at the Pontificia Universidad Católica of Perú from 2001 to 2007 and at Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam (NL) from 2016 to 2017. She has presented solo exhibitions at the Peruvian- British Cultural Center (PE), Inca Garcilaso Cultural Center of the Foreign Affair’s Ministry of Perú (PE), and French Alliance Gallery of Miraflores (PE). Her work can be found in the collection of the Central Reserve Bank of Perú (PE); Lima Art Museum (PE); Micromuseo alfondohaysitio (PE); Museo Olho Latino (BR); Hochschild Collection (PE), Graeme Briggs Collection (SG), and several private collections.

Curriculum Vitae

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