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Lucía Guadalupe Guillén


Winner Challenge 2020


Lucía Guadalupe Guillén

Lucia Guadalupe Guillén was born in Argentina in 1987, in the small town of Rio Gallegos in the far south of Patagonia, not far from the Tierra del Fuego. She started drawing and painting as a child, soon realising that her creativity was an important means of escape. After living for period in Salta, not far from the border with Bolivia, her family moved first to Buenos Aires and then on to Brescia, in northern Italy. Here, at the age of 15 she went to high school at the Liceo Artistic Oliveri where she developed a passion for drawing, painting and studying. She continued her studies at the Accademia de Belle Arti in Venice, before graduating from the Accademia di Brera in Milan. Two of her most important and personal exhibitions are Pausa entre Imagenes, curated by Andrea Del Guercio at the Offbrera Art Gallery in Milano and Boutique’s feeling, La moda, presented by Lorenzo Marini and organised by the Mondadori Megastore in Piazza Duomo. She has also won prizes for her work including the Premio Ricoh awarded to young contemporary artists in the Oberdan exhibition space in Milano. Lucia Guadalupe loves experimenting with a variety of different materials. She combines crayons, pencils, acrylic paints with other materials like paper, pieces of plastic, bubble wrap and thread. The effect is fascinating. When observed from a distance the different techniques merge into one, and at times can hardly be distinguished one from the other. It seems like the finely woven tapestries the artist loved as a girl. In some cases, parallel lines of long stitches, each line painstakingly sewn one below the other, create the fabric of the clothes whilst in other cases, stitching is used to embroider details. The artist’s works are grouped into series and women are always the protagonists. Their poses, gestures and clothing are a reflection of their personality. The originality of the series Pausa entre les images lies in the fact that the artist chooses not to show the faces of the women she has painted. She thinks their faces are too direct an expression of emotions and feelings. She prefers to focus on the body and its gestures set against a neutral background. She directs our attention to a specific body part and variations in the position of hands and legs. The way the body is held reveals feelings and give us an insight into the personality of the woman. The message is subtle, soft and delicate, almost poetic. The choice of clothes worn by the women emphasises the importance of the gestures captured by the artist. The artist uses warm and pastel colours and in particular shades of pink conveying life and positivity Colours are mixed with stitches, plants, leaves, insects and the use of different materials gives rise to original textures, inspired by the Andean culture of the artist’s place of birth, Salta. In the series, Shop Windows, the people have been removed, leaving only showy, bold clothes, ornately decorated with symbols. In creating these clothes, the artist imagines the body and soul that lives within them. The series of works Boutique’s feeling is about clothes and the story they tell. Here, the clothes are drawn on tracing paper, allowing us to feel almost as if we were wearing the clothes. The choice of black and white as opposed to colour, makes us concentrate on the drawing itself. They are richly patterned with leaves, flowers, animals, insects and other details. A picture to be “worn” that takes us on a journey of memories, both symbolic and metaphysic. In 2020 in her final series Pausa entre les images, the artist experiments with brighter colours. The hues are warm against set against the colder colours of the inserts. The backgrounds are no longer neutral, they are intricately worked like tapestries and are an extension of the person in the painting, their gestures and their personality. Elements of different materials are worked in with the stitching and add a symbolic message. In her growth and development as an artist Lucia Guadalupe Guillén speaks of women without actually painting them. Her original techniques and powerful, personal evocative language tell a silent tale in a world without time.

Special Project

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