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Oscar Chavez

Nominated by the University of Illinois - Chicago

My work serves as an exploration of my specific understanding of what it means to exist in our current place in time through painting and performance. My view of the world has and continues to be molded by technology and my upbringing in a world shaped by the Internet. My approach to art making is highly researched based, utilizing texts predating myself and common tools such as Google and Instagram. Each work exists as a mark in a larger conversation that is my practice, rather than isolated commodity objects. By using images and ideas from common language in conversation with facets of history, art and otherwise, I understand my place in the larger conversation that is art history that has led up to this moment. In my performances and paintings, the abstracted body appears in many colors.

My use of my own body references common performance practices of feminists in the 70’s. By using my own body as an object, I can elicit the politics and history that are attributed to the male body, and even the genderless body when presented in today’s social understandings. This inherently political process of representing my own body in the public sphere removes it of any art context and thus collapses common understandings of artwork, artist, and viewer.

Image: Unsolicited Dick Pic, 2017

Resident year: 
2017
Cohort Group: 
Artist Resident