EYE CANDY

The Self-Portraits That Don’t Appear to Have a “Self”

Eve.jpeg
Courtesy of the artist and saltfineart

To say that landscape paintings have long enjoyed popularity is a bit of an understatement: they’ve been a go-to art form for centuries, dating all the way back to Minoan Greece and Ancient Egypt. Throughout all of those centuries and iterations, though, no one seems to have quite reinvented them like Cecilia Paredes, a Peruvian-born, Philadelphia-based artist who devotes a significant amount of her time to acting as a human chameleon. Rather than use a canvas, Paredes (whose last name fittingly translates to “walls” in Spanish—instead paints directly onto her own skin, combining body paint and stretches of ornately patterned wallpaper to create “landscapes” that also happen to double as subtle self-portraits. There’s yet another nearly invisible layer to be found in her most recent series, now on view at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, California through December 30, too: with a simple request for viewers to consider what blending in to one’s surroundings might involve in a different context, as in matters involving migration—the mention of which suddenly makes her work appear much less flowery than it seems.

1
Courtesy of the artist and saltfineart

Cecilia Paredes, Sea of Roses, 2011. On view at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, California through December 30, 2018.

2
Courtesy of the artist and saltfineart

Cecilia Paredes, Firenze, 2018. On view at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, California through December 30, 2018.

3
Courtesy of the artist and saltfineart

Cecilia Paredes, Corinthians Blue, 2015. On view at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, California through December 30, 2018.

4
Courtesy of the artist and saltfineart

Cecilia Paredes, Eve, 2018. On view at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, California through December 30, 2018.

5
Courtesy of the artist and saltfineart

Cecilia Paredes, Vienna, 2016. On view at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, California through December 30, 2018.

6
Courtesy of the artist and saltfineart

Cecilia Paredes, Hermitage ll, 2017. On view at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, California through December 30, 2018.

7
Courtesy of the artist and saltfineart

Cecilia Paredes, The Secret, 2018. On view at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, California through December 30, 2018.

8
Courtesy of the artist and saltfineart

Cecilia Paredes, The Three Graces, 2018. On view at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, California through December 30, 2018.