"To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour"
William Blake, Auguries of Innocence
Ximena Velasco (1967) is a Chilean artist based in Santiago who grew up in the U.S. She graduated with distinction from Universidad Católica de Chile School of Art, with a major in painting. (1993)
Some of her many solo exhibitions are: Morfologías at Espacio O (2018), Médula at Galería XS (2015), and Mutaciones in Sala Gasco, 2015, Santiago, Chile.
Ximena has attended four residencies, School of Visual Arts, New York, 2011, Scuola Internazionale di Grafica, Venezia, 2013, Slade School of Arts, London, 2015, and Vermont Studio Residency, Vermont, 2018.
She is the recipient of several grants, some of which are Fondart (Chilean State Grant) in 1999 and 2011, and a Vermont Studio Center Merit Grant. (2018)
Her work has been exhibited in Chile, Italy, the U.S, and the U.K., and her work is part of private collections in Santiago, Los Angeles, California, Washington D.C, New York, Paris and London.
The vast and minimal landscape of the north of Chile has fed my interest in abstraction. For the last two decades work has been primarily bi dimensional, gravitating towards paint, graphite, and collage, often on canvas, paper or aluminum. This process is mostly intuitive, but at times it is a highly controlled and premeditated practice. Although I rarely have a specific point of departure, the work process is generally composed of a layering of drawings, marks and abstract structures set in different orders. Most recently I have experimented escaping the barriers of paper and canvas by drawing directly on the wall.
For the past decade my work has emerged from observing certain organic structures found in the Chilean coast and desert, such as stones, branches and seaweed. I have photographed them, worked their shapes into drawings until they have acquired an identity of their own. I have also been drawn to the shapes of cells, bacteria and other microorganisms. You could say my work is a mix of biology and botany and the intersections between micro and macro. I’m interested in these structures and their capacit,y to mutate, as well as their permanent coincidences with the shapes and structures of our own bodies.