Sandra Monterroso

Sandra Monterroso (1974) is a Guatemalan artist whose oeuvre is tied to a recognition of her Mayan origin. She primarily explores the paradoxes of belonging to an indigenous mestizaje that frequently goes unrecognized, even in its place of origin. When her maternal grandmother was lying on her deathbed, she spoke to her in Q’eqchi’ Maya to ask for water; although the artist did not understand the literal translation of her words, she understood that her world was going to have to change. Immersed in the impact of the Q’eqchi words, Sandra Monterroso started down a path toward the reconstruction of her own history, completing a geo-poetics of her past linked to the indigenous world. A recognition of her indigenous side has sparked the most significant motivation for her artistic practice over the past twenty years. Monterroso examines transversal aspects of culture such as gender, racialized bodies, communal feminism, modernity, and coloniality; for this she uses several different media, including video-art, performance, painting, and sculpture. For Monterroso, it is very important to de-contextualize symbolic elements that exist in a none-too-comfortable conflict within the relationship between ancestral cultures and contemporary culture.

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