The Jane Hartsook Gallery is pleased to present new work by Cristina Tufiño. Tufiño is an interdisciplinary artist whose work draws on matriarchal power and sexuality. In this new body of sculptural work, Tufiño develops the exploration she began in her video essay Dear Pilar (2018), using historical symbols and personal experiences to explore the tension between biographical representation, memory and desire.
Appearing improvisational at first, consideration shows how carefully Tufiño has layered historical reference with autobiographical imagery. A collection of cast ceramic keyboards, cat heads, fingers and pineapples stand out as the refuse of some past-present millennial culture, waiting to be discovered by a future archeologist. The palette of the installation as a whole is sourced from the vibrant colors of ancient Greek statues before they were eroded by time. The embracing sphinxes twine together the disparate histories of Ancient Egypt, French Egyptian Revival furniture and the vernacular art of Las Vegas architecture and tourist souvenirs.
Tufiño connects these broader historical references to her personal experience, juxtaposing archeological references with images of her childhood home in San Juan, Puerto Rico, her travels to Tokyo, Japan and her visits to the lush gardens of the Chateau de Fontainebleau in France. The ceramic polaroid picture wall reliefs are fragmented memories—both real and imagined from 2001—drawn from personal photographs, found images of bar hostesses in Tokyo, and women bored and drinking in bars or coming home to mundane lives. This collage of artifacts comes together as an imagined vision into the past through a future nostalgia, a nostalgia that is sensual and bright despite its dark undertones.
Cristina Tufiño (b. 1982) was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico and lives and works between Philadelphia, PA and New York, NY. Tufiño received her MFA from the University of Pennsylvania, her BFA in photography from the Rhode Island School of Design, and her BA in art history from the University of Puerto Rico. Her work has been shown in a number of solo, two-person and group exhibitions including at: Knockdown Center (Queens, NY; 2018), Galería Agustina Ferreyra (Mexico City, Mexico; 2018), NADA NY (New York, NY; 2017), The Hole (New York, NY; 2018), Ruberta (Los Angeles, CA; 2017) and Hidrante (San Juan, Puerto Rico; 2016). Tufiño has won the ARTADIA Award (2016) and the Chenven Foundation Artist Grant (2016) and been artist in residence at the Loisaida Arts Center (New York, NY; 2016) and the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture (Madison, ME; 2012).