No Man’s Land

Nohemí Pérez

In Residence: Jan 23 – Mar 20, 2023

Exhibition: Mar 16 – May 7, 2023

Nohemí Pérez’s art captures the fraught relationship between humanity and nature, a theme that persists in her Artpace exhibition, No Man’s Land

The Texas landscape forms the background of the drawings, hinting at notions of migration, as Texas is an entry point into the United States for many migrants, especially those uprooted from their homes in southern countries. While this new work is a continuation of Pérez’s previous artwork, it expands new landscapes and relationships between men and nature. In this case, it is a study on seeking refuge in another land.  

In No Man’s Land, the large scale conveys the vastness of the land, while the use of charcoal reflects the artist’s commentary on the exploitation of natural resources (which in Latin America, Pérez’s home country, brings with it war and displacement). The charcoal is messy, smudged, and imperfect, in layers of black, brown, and white. Hidden among the smokey landscape, you might find figures making their way across the terrain and delicate threads of embroidery delineating borders. 

Completing the exhibition are small watercolor studies of travelers and paintings of the landscape, which serve as the main source of color in the installation. The watercolor paintings are encased in Ziploc bags, pinned to the wall, and surrounded by landscapes as if both the artist and the environment offer protection to the weary travelers. Pérez shared with Artpace, “Many people migrate to escape or in search of a better future for their children. One of the places they see as the promised land is the United States.” Visitors are invited to immerse themselves in the gallery’s landscape, offering a window into the vast expanses of land where people wander and seek new opportunities. 


Nohemí Pérez

Bogotá, Colombia

Nohemí Pérez is a Colombian artist, born in Tibú, Norte de Santander. She lives and works in Bogotá, Colombia.

The work of Nohemí Pérez, multidisciplinary, revolves around the relationship between men and nature; the conflicts, tensions, and genesis that arise from this constant friction. Based on the notions of architecture, cinema, and sociology, the artist proposes a rereading of the Catatumbo territory; a geographical region with a very particular natural and sociocultural ecosystem. Nohemí mainly uses charcoal in her work as a reference to mining; With charcoal, she aims to make visible the exploitation of natural resources and the violence that these events trigger. A particular interest in Nohemí’s work is to draw new symbolic and geographical maps that correspond to the various realities of the Catatumbo to allow it to appear on the scene of reconstruction and peace.

Some of her solo exhibitions are El Bosque en Llamas at Instituto de Visión Gallery, New York; El lecho del bosque, SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah, USA; Al este del Paraíso, Galería Nueveochenta, Bogotá; Catatumbo, Museo de Arte Moderno de Barranquilla; Babilonia, Alonso Garcés Galería, Bogota. Her work is part of public and private collections such as ARCO Foundation, Portland Art Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art of Chicago, University of Chicago, Banco de la República Art Collection, Luis Ángel Arango Library Collection, Museo de Arte Moderno de Cartagena, CAF Corporación Andina de Fomento – Caracas Venezuela, Museo de Arte Moderno de Barranquilla, and Kadist.

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Gabriela Rangel

Gabriela Rangel is an independent curator, writer and editor based in Brooklyn, New York. From 2019 to 2021 she was artistic director of the Museo de Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires (MALBA). Previously, she was visual arts director and chief curator at Americas Society from 2004 to 2019. She holds an MA in curatorial studies from the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, an MA in media and communications studies from the Universidad Católica Andrés Bello, Caracas, and film studies from the International Film School at San Antonio de los Baños, Cuba. She has worked at the Fundación Cinemateca Nacional and the Museo Alejandro Otero in Caracas, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Rangel have curated and co-curated numerous exhibitions on modern and contemporary art as well as monographic shows on Carlos Cruz-Diez, Marta Minujín, Gordon Matta-Clark, GEGO, Arturo Herrera, Silvia Gruner, José Leonilson, Eric Meyenberg, and Alejandro Xul Solar. She has written for Hyperallergic, Letras Libres, Revista Ñ, Art in America, Parkett, The Brooklyn Rail, and Art Nexus, edited numerous books, and contributed texts to such publications as Emily Mae Smith (Petzeld Gallery, New York); Pedro Reyes: Sociatry (Museum Marta Hertford, Hertford, Germany, 2022); Rosangela Renno (Pinacoteca de SP, 2021); Erick Meyenberg: D Major Isn’t Blue (Museo Amparo, 2020); Lydia Cabrera: Between the Sum and the Parts (Americas Society/Koenig Books, London, 2019); Contesting Modernity: Informalism in Venezuela 1955–1975 (Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 2018); Marta Minujín, Minocodes (Americas Society, 2016); and A Principality of Its Own (Americas Society/Harvard University Press, 2006). She is currently working on her book Strategies of Self Sabotage: Art and Politics in Venezuela 1959-1973

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