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

  • Art Fix Friday: July 31, 2020

    Posted: Jul 31, 2020 in Art Fix Friday
    Grace Lynne Hayes debuts a new portrait of Sojourner Truth for this week’s cover of the New Yorker; A profile on Thandi Sibisi, South Africa's first Black woman gallerist; A new show on ecofeminism at Thomas Erben Gallery; and more.
    A black-and-white photograph of a light-skinned adult woman holding a newspaper with news about World War II. She wears a coat and her short, curly hair is caught in the wind.
    Blog Category:  Art Fix Friday
  • Mask Up! Five Questions with Scarlett Baily

    Posted: Jul 30, 2020 in Museum Shop
    Scarlett Baily is a Chicana visual artist, based in Mexico City, who specializes in murals, paintings, and illustration. Her designs celebrating women artists and civil rights adorn new face masks from NMWA's Museum Shop, now available for purchase.
    Blog Category:  Museum Shop
  • Director's Desk: Getting to Work

    Posted: Jul 28, 2020 in Director's Desk
    As the pandemic continues, it is exacerbating existing inequalities in race, gender, and class. Women and women artists have always faced a balancing act between career and personal pursuits.
    A light-skinned young woman with long, dark brown hair in a black, long lace sleeved dress stands confidently in a crumbling loggia. She gazes at the viewer with a serious, captivating look.
    Blog Category:  Director's Desk