In the Brazlian artist’s first ever exhibition held in the Western United States, Any Moment Now at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art presents a major mid-career survey of work by contemporary artist Valeska Soares. Opening this September, the show is part of the Getty’s initiative Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, a far-reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles. It brings together more than 40 artworks by Valeska including installation, sculpture, photography and video, dating from the early 1990s to the present day. Substantiating Soares’ distinctive role in the international legacy of installation art, visitors will be introduced to the social, political and personal aspects of her Latin American work, and its relationship with the very exhibition’s locale.
Interweaving themes of memory, desire, poetry, love and longing, the show incorporates collected and found objects such as light fixtures, antique stools, book dust jackets, mirrors, and flowers. Valeska re-purposes these objects and actively invites the spectator’s own reading. The referent installation, Any Moment Now… (2014), composed of 365 vintage dust jackets mounted on canvases, becomes a subjective mapping of a year’s time. The titles of each book range from Long Day's Journey Into Night, to The Morning After to Now or Never, triggering personal memories and experiences that contribute to ever-shifting narratives. Although minimalist in form, her oeuvre encompasses the organic, sentimental, and expressive.
Followers of Valeska’s practice have often talked of experiencing a split between real and representational time when viewing her work. As one critic recently put it, when viewing her work ‘you become aware of your own daydream.’ Traversing the various cultural, social and political contexts between South and North America through a vast collection of personal objects and materials, Valeska’s art bears a strong and often complicated connection to place (she is known to many, for example, for having created a large-scale installation on both sides of the Mexican-American border for the San Diego Museum). For this show at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, it seems as if viewers will be able to experience Valeska’s work to in all of its vast, and rich context.
Valeska Soares: Any Moment Now,17 September – 31 December 2017,
Santa Barbara Museum of Art, 1130 State Street, Santa Barbara CA 93101