Urgent Museum Notice

Image for Artist Spotlight: Valeska Soares–More Than The Eye Can See

Artist Spotlight: Valeska Soares–More than the Eye Can See

Blog Category:  Artist Spotlight
Valeska Soares, Untitled (from “Entanglement” series), 1996; Cast beeswax and oil perfume; 48 x 50 x 12 1/2 in.; Gift of Heather and Tony Podesta Collection, Washington, DC

Brazilian sculptor and installation artist Valeska Soares investigates multi-sensory approaches and how memory and personality influence the viewers’ perception of art. Soares has two artworks in P(art)ners: Gifts from Heather and Tony Podesta, on view through March 6. In Untitled (from Entanglement series), Soares creates both an olfactory and a visual experience. She carved two highly naturalistic mouths that each reveal a tongue and teeth, although their gender is unclear. Perfumed oil flows across the top of the wax slab from one mouth to another. Her other work, Untitled (from Vanishing Point series), employs mirrors to create a distorted view, evoking an imaginative and daydream-like quality.
Soares describes the challenges and uncertainties of the creative process: “You develop an idea, but if you’re really sure of how the project is going to be perceived, there’s no point in doing it. You have to allow yourself the possibility of failure, which would mean that all of the particulars of that situation could not be encompassed. If I allow myself that possibility, I learn things and can take a critical position toward what I do.”

Valeska Soares, Untitled (from “Vanishing Point” series), 2002; Cast bronze, chromed; 11 1/4 x 7 7/8 x 3 1/2 in.; Gift of Heather and Tony Podesta Collection, Washington, DC

Born in 1957 in Belo Horizonte in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais, Soares now resides in Brooklyn, New York, where she has been working for the past fifteen years, but still maintains a close connection to Minas. She received a Bachelor of Architecture from the Universidade Santa Úrsula, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (1987), a Post-Graduate Specialization Diploma in History of Art and Architecture at Pontificia Universidade Católica, Rio de Janeiro (1990), a Master of Arts from Pratt Institute, New York (1994), and a Ph.D. in Arts from New York University, New York (1994).
Soares has exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions and her work is in the collections of the Tate, London, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C., the Solomon Guggenheim Museum, New York, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, California, Centro de Arte Contemporânea, Inhotin, Brazil, and Centro De Arte Contemporánea, Malaga, Spain.

Works Cited
Martí , Silas. “Valeska Soares .” Frieze Magazine Mar. 2008: n. pag. Frieze. Web. 24 Jan. 2011. <http://www.frieze.com/issue/review/valeska_soares/>.
Muniz, Vik. “Valeska Soares.” BOMB Magazine Winter 2001: n. pag. Bombsite. Web. 24 Jan. 2011. <http://bombsite.com/issues/74/articles/2353>.
“Sharjah Art Foundation – Soares.” Sharjah Art Foundation – Home. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Jan. 2011. <http://www.sharjahart.org/people/people-by-alphabet/s/soares-valeska>.

Related Posts

  • Welcome!

    Posted: Jul 06, 2009 in Director's Desk
    As the director of the National Museum of Women in the Arts, I welcome you to our new blog, Broad Strokes: NMWA’s Blog for the 21st Century! As NMWA enters...
    The artist stands in a stage-like space framed by white curtains. Beneath black hair woven with red yarn and flowers, heavy brows accent her dark-eyed gaze. Clad in a fringed, honey-toned shawl; long, pink skirt; and gold jewelry, she holds a bouquet and a handwritten letter.
    Blog Category:  Director's Desk
  • What's in a frame?

    Posted: Jul 20, 2009 in Behind the Scenes
    Why do people visit art museums? That’s easy: to see art. But all too often when strolling through our favorite galleries, we forget to take notice of those unsung objects...
    Close up shot of a gallery wall installed salon style, with many small paintings hung closely together.
    Blog Category:  Behind the Scenes
  • Artist Spotlight: Interview with Maggie Foskett

    Posted: Sep 18, 2009 in Artist Spotlight
    Maggie Foskett (American, b.1919) would not have you call her a “nature artist;” nor is she a romantic about humanity’s relationship with the natural world. Rather, she is an artist...
    Blog Category:  Artist Spotlight