CARMEN MOLINA

THE STORY

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Carmen Molina is a visual artist living in Los Angeles and born in Bogotá. She has a BFA in Photography from the School of Visual Arts in New York. The prints on the pieces that she creates derive from many photographs that she has been capturing with her camera throughout her travels of the world. She is inspired by density, depth, texture, color and light, all of which have become a constant subject in her work. Her curiosity and need to explore allow her to follow that subject into wild, raw, sometimes remote, sometimes decadent and sometimes extravagant environments. Old Delhi, an abandoned cotton factory, a market in Tel Aviv, the streets of colorful and vibrant cities like Athens, or Jaffa, or Bogotá or Mexico City, the Salton Sea with its beach composed of fish bones are all like magnets to her. She know’s that’s where her subject will be posing for her.

For years she has been presenting her work on paper, mainly in galleries such as the Galería Sextante in Bogotá. However, the recent revolution in digital textile printing stirred a desire in her to start experimenting with textiles. Because of its relationship to light she loved the way the work printed on silk. During the process it became apparent to her that movement was a new layer that could be added to the visual experience of her work. Then there was the silk on the skin with its draping qualities and delicacy. Her fascination with the silk evolved; the visual and the now also tactile experience of this ancient and natural textile are the reason behind her most recent work.

THE EARTH I love the earth. I love everything it has to offer. The air, the water, the animals, the plants, the metals, the gems, the textures. The beauty.  I love everything organic and which lives in harmony with the natural processes of the universe and I take great pleasure in wearing textiles made of natural fibers. Silk is my first choice. It is gentle to the touch, kind to the earth, easy to my body.

THE SILK As a woman I like moving through life lightly, fluid and smoothly. Bathed in color. I’ve found in silk the perfect textile for me to live in and to expose what I see; patterns, colors, depth, layers, moods. Silk makes me warm in the cold and cool in the heat. It absorbs and reflects color as no other textile, it shines and shimmers. It breathes. It flows. It can be buttery soft, strong and durable.  

THE PRINTS As a photographer I enjoy watching and capturing textures that call to me. Those photographs become the brush to create the prints I transpose onto the silk. It's a process of seeing, deconstructing and expressing.

The art lives around me. I only need to look. It lives in the orange and blacks of forests struck by fire. It lives in the rusted steel framing in a long abandoned textile factory; in the black curtain of an industrial city trying to hide a sun set; in the wild and gliding waves of the Pacific at sunrise. I've seen it pose in majestic trunks of African trees waiting to be chunked into pieces by a veneer factory, in the glittering white of a moist sea of salt contained by a red and rocky backdrop; in India as hundreds of eagles air-dance to the energetic beats of cities chanting.


THE KIMONOS In Japanese the word  "Kimono" translates to “wear (Ki) + object or thing (Mono)”.  To me a Kimono is also a canvas. What you see imprinted on the kimonos presented in this series is altered photography and the result of years of exploring parts of the world and its textures with my camera. East and West, North and South. New York, Paris, India, Greece, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem , Bethlehem, Colombia, Mexico City , Madrid, Stockholm , Berlin, and many parts in the US,  to name a few, I’ve walked and photographed. Each place contributing with its life and texture to the creation of this work.

Carmen Molina