Juliana Cerqueira Leite, ‘Summertime Blues #1’, 2012, TJ Boulting

About Juliana Cerqueira Leite

Juliana Cerqueira Leite’s large-scale, tactile sculptures investigate the abilities and constraints of the human body. Using her own body as a primary tool, Cerqueira Leite digs, climbs, scratches, and pushes through her materials—which include clay, latex, and plaster—to create organic forms. The sculptures retain impressions of the artist’s legs, arms, and fingers and often resemble skin, bone, and similarly corporeal matter. Cerqueira Leite’s work references Eva Hesse, Lynda Benglis, and other artists interested in the intersection of the body, art history, and social politics. Explaining her use of materials, Cerqueira Leite has said, “One of the reasons I use so much density of material is that I want to upset the status quo—the idea that matter is consistently subservient to our desires. I want to put myself in a position where matter is in just as much in control as I am.”

Brazilian-American, b. 1981, Chicago, Illinois, based in Brooklyn, New York