Works in Paper by Elsa Mora
January 18 – April 12, 2020
Opening: Saturday, January 18, 6 – 8 PM
Curated by Jill Hartz
“Working with a material as simple as paper means that if you want to push the envelope, then you need to push your brain to think outside the box. That can be as frustrating as it can be exciting. This process has taught me that, like people, paper cannot be underestimated in terms of the hidden potential that lies within it.” –Elsa Mora
Paper Weight is Elsa Mora’s latest exhibition of painstaking works made solely of paper and glue. First exhibited at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art in Eugene, Oregon, Mora’s 2D and 3D pieces presented in this exhibition are inspired by the cognitive faculties that form the mind: consciousness, perception, thinking, judgment, language, and memory. For the last eleven years, Elsa has explored the expressive potential of paper, while seeing the malleability of this material as a metaphor for the mind and its ability to morph and adapt. Manipulating light and shadow is an organic part of her process, as well as the use of color, and in some cases the lack of it. Thematically, Mora is interested in studying the intricacies of the human brain, the wonders that it can produce, as well as its potential for destruction and chaos. Her work as a whole reflects on universal issues of identity, connectivity, and survival.
Elsa Mora is an artist and curator. A recipient of the UNESCO-Aschberg Bursaries for Artists, she was born and raised in Cuba and moved to Los Angeles, CA, in 2001, where she lived until 2014. Mora currently resides in New York with her husband and their two children. Elsa’s art has been exhibited worldwide in art galleries and museums. She taught at the Vocational School of Arts in Camaguey, Cuba, and has been a visiting artist at the Art Institute of Chicago, the San Francisco State University, The Art Institute of Boston, the MoMA Design Store, and the National Gallery of Art, among other places. Her work is in the permanent collection of the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC, the Long Beach Museum of Art in CA, and The Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Eugene, OR. Mora has collaborated as an illustrator with organizations such as the Museum of Modern Art, Chronicle Books, The New York Review of Books, Penguin Random House, The Oprah Magazine, Cosmopolitan, and teNeues, among others. Mora is also one of the founding members of ArtYard, where she is artistic director and curator.