The last year on Metàfora’s Studio arts Program is a time for preparing the first major art event in the life of any upcoming artist: Presenting the Thesina and participating in the Final Show.
Metàfora’s advanced level students spend the last months of their training on perfecting their artistic discourse and preparing a substantial and coherent production of artworks to be presented at the end of the course.
At the beginning of the winter-spring semester, each student meets their external tutor for the first time. The function of the external tutor is to help open doors to the art world and offer an additional perspective on the art work of the student.
Towards the middle of the last semester, the first draft of the thesina is due. The thesina is an extended artist statement, with referencies of influential artists, thinkers etc. The draft is reviewed by Critical Theory teacher, Rubén Verdú. Once the final version of the thesina has been presented, the student prepares a presentation of the main ideas and conclusions to be presented at the end of the semester. The presentation is public and takes place in Barcelona’s prestigious Contemporary Art Museum, MACBA.
Each student on the 3rd year of the Studio Arts Program is assigned an external tutor who is an established professional, usually in the Barcelona arts scene. The external tutor meets up with the student and guides them and giving them useful insight which will hopefully prove to be very helpful as they transition into the role they intend to take once their stay at Metàfora is over.
Based on the student’s trajectory, the external tutor could be an artist who works in a similar field, or has a relatable artistic discourse, a gallerist, a curator or cultural agent.
The external tutor selection is done in tandem with the student, in fact, the student often chooses an ideal tutor, and Metàfora makes it happen.
This year’s students and external tutors
(in order of presentation) are:
Madhulika Mohan + Pilar Cruz
Yaiza Seguí Latorre + Alicia Kopf
Joely Lorenzen + Cory Scozzari
Kirra Kusy + David Bestué
Heather Zehren + Joana Roda
April Walton + Aldo Urbano
Leyli Alakbarova + Arash Fayez
Marina Bathanis + Serafin Alvarez
Cristina Reid Martínez + Eulalia Rovira
Eléa Orengo de Lamazière + Paula Bruna
Anais Delforge Mistry + Agustin Ortiz Herrera
Madhulika Mohan (India, 1995)
We make memories but, don’t memories make us?
Memories are our identities-identities are our perception-perceptions are our thoughts-thoughts are our words-words are but lines, dashes, and dots- dressed in our weight.
Madhulika Mohan is a multi-disciplinary artist primarily working with text. In the form of videos, poetry, and interactive installations, her works are observations, and notes to understand and deconstruct the ‘human condition’ as experienced through words.
Pilar Cruz (Zaragoza, 1972)
Pilar Cruz has a Degree in Art History and an official master’s degree in Advanced Studies in Art History from the Universitat of Barcelona, with a final project on ye-yé subculture and cinema. She is curator of exhibitions and cultural manager. He has worked in various institutions such as the Serralves Museum, MACBA or European Capital of Culture Porto 2001, and curated projects for, among others, CaixaForum, Sala d’Art Jove, Arts Santa Mònica, Can Felipa, Sant Andreu Contemporani, Sala Muncunill de Terrassa, Festival Periferias, or Espai 13 of the Fundació Miró… She was selected as a participating curator in the first edition of the Komisario Berriak (Capital of Culture San Sebastián 2016) curatorial laboratories. She was co-director, together with the anthropologist Marc Roig, of the Liminal GR series, which for 6 years programmed different artistic disciplines around common places of contemporary culture at the Antic Teatre. She likes hybrid projects, that’s why she set up Degénero editions (textile artists editions) together with Fito Conesa. She has been part of several juries for prizes and competitions such as the Art Nou Festival, Barcelona Crea Grants of the Barcelona City Council, or Barcelona Producció; and also writes art criticism and texts for catalogues and exhibitions.
Cruz is currently part of the curatorial team of the La Capella Art Center and works as an artistic advisor to the Temporals project, which brings exhibitions of contemporary art to a network of civic centres in Barcelona.
Yaiza Seguí Latorre
Yaiza Seguí Latorre (Andorra, 2000)
Throughout these years I’ve been exploring conceptual art from different perspectives.
Emerged from a poetic voice, my love for painting alongside of the beauty and delicacy of nature, have been the main themes and inspiration of my art productions. Portrayed into both poetry and prose my goal is to bring it to an artistic form, exploring different fields such as performance or minimalistic installations, built up with detailed and significant objects, often combined with sound compositions, lights and photography in order to capture the essence of the words through the ephemeral, creating a constant evolution and of my work.
Alicia Kopf (Girona, 1982)
Alicia Kopf is a Spanish author and artist based in Barcelona. She is interested in the concept of exploration, particularly polar exploration, which is visible throughout her work both as an artist and an author.
Kopf has a degree in Fine Arts and in Literary Theory and Comparative Literature. She published her first book, ‘Maneres de (not) entrar casa’, in 2011 thanks to a Girona Kreas grant.
She has participated in many prestigious exhibitions. She presented the exhibition ‘Seal sounds under the floor’ in Barcelona and participated in group shows such as ‘Piso Piloto’ (CCCB 2015) or ‘Nonument’ (Macba 2014). Her awards include the GAC-DKV Prize for best young artist gallery exhibition, the Premi Documenta literary prize, and the Premi Llibreter awarded by booksellers. She currently works at the Open University of Catalonia as a lecturer in Communications.
Joely Lorenzen (USA, 1997)
Joely Lorenzen works with sculpture, sound, installation, video and performance. The current discourse of her work would like to find home in ‘poetic anarchy’. She works with an ongoing commitment to looking at violent systems, credibility and care in an autobiographical framing. She is most interested in themes living in a paradoxical simultaneity. In this discourse, and within its trajectory, lives a curiosity and desire to unpack the effects of deeply religious (Western) Christian consciousness on the psyche and its oppression of bodies, internal dialogue and external dogma and the potential for spirituality to flourish, rather, in structure-less spaces.
Cory Scozzari (Florida, 1988)
Cory Scozzari is a curator and artist.
Scozzari’s work more generally looks at issues around identity politics, power relations, violence and sex.
He is the founder and director of Cordova, a curatorial project initiated in 2016 in Vienna, currently located in Barcelona. From 2015-2017 he worked as assistant curator at Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary. He was a founding member and co-director of Jupiter Woods, London/Vienna from 2014–16.
He received his BFA in photography from SCAD in 2010 and a MFA in curating at Goldsmiths in 2015. Recent exhibitions include: Holly White: ORANGE WORLD at Cordova in Barcelona, and Crater by Miguel Fernández de Castro and Lydia Ourahmane at Veda in Florence.
Kirra Kusy (USA, 2001)
Kirra Kusy is an artist working with encounters and accumulation. Her work takes from found objects and second-hand textiles. Using materials that have a previous history, she continues their longevity by constructing them in manners that are as peculiar and absurd as the constructs during which they were invented. These found object studies look into the cross sections of the natural and the pedestrian, excavating the creativity of femininity that exists through necessity. Her work extends and investigates the qualities of these materials and in turn, points to ideas of home, displacement, and a scattered identity.
David Bestué (Barcelona, 1980)
David Bestué is an artist and writer, currently living between Madrid and Barcelona.
He is interested in the relationship between text, sculpture and architecture. His practice experiments with ideas from poetry, history, art, and architecture, testing the extent to which they can be investigated both literally and conceptually. Through small changes and everyday scenes, his works create absurd situations that question our conventions of behavior, and try to establish temporary and fragile connections between permanent forms and the presence of transitory elements, both human and intimate in space.
Among his solo exhibitions, ROSI AMOR (Reina Sofia Museum, Madrid, 2017) and Realisme (La Capella, Barcelona, 2015) stand out. He has participated in group shows in New York (New York Public Library), Buenos Aires (Universidad Di Tella), Barcelona (MACBA), among others. Between 2003 and 2009 he developed Enric Miralles left and right and later Pure Formalism on twentieth century Spanish architecture. Both were published by Tenov. He has done residencies at Gasworks (London, 2010) and de_sitio (Mexico DF, 2013) and Kunsthalle Sao Paulo (Sao Paulo, 2016).
Heather Zehren (USA, 1970)
Heather Zehren is a multidisciplinary artist working in collaboration with objects to investigate the intersections between matter and consciousness. Referencing her background in environmental science and economics, she employs basic principals of theoretical physics and biology, as well as neuroscience and philosophy, to explore the immateriality of objects and their potential agency.
By establishing a dialogue with discarded found objects in various states of degradation, Heather reimagines their function and challenges both the subject object divide as well as the illusion of creative authorship. In a world gone mad with rampant manufacturing and overconsumption, she seeks to stimulate discourse about our human relationship to objects, cycles of physical change, and the interconnectedness between the natural, material and immaterial world.
Joana Roda (Barcelona 1987)
Joana Roda studied Fine Arts at the University of Barcelona for 3 years and then left to study Art History at the Universitat Autónoma de Barcelona, the Sorbonne IV in Paris and the Complutense in Madrid.
When she finished her degree, moved to Montreal, Canada, where she worked in a gallery and started looking for ways to make everything a little more profitable. One of them was to prepare catering based on potato omelettes and serve them at the openings (from there came some commissions for other artistic events). She also worked in a laundry, the Itacate restaurant and the Kilo Café bakery. All these works forged the entrepreneur she is now.
When she arrived in Barcelona, worked at the Biocenter restaurant and at the Miquel Alzueta Gallery and continued with the theme of food, collaborating with Bernat Daviu in the Forever Blowing Bubbles project, which offered catering for exhibition openings where art and food were linked.
As a result of Forever Blowing Bubbles, ‘Guanyar-se’ls Garrofes’ was born. The project was presented at the Miró Foundation and the MACBA (within the framework of the Antoni Miralda’s International) and was selected for the Loop Discover 2017 award. In 2016, together with Joana Llauradó, she was awarded the INJUVE grant for young creation with the exhibition programme ‘Bienvenido comisariado’ (Welcome to the Curatorship), which was presented at La Puntual in Sant Cugat and at Trapecio space in Madrid.
Between 2015 and 2018 she worked as coordinator of the programme of activities and exhibitions at the Maristany Art Centre in Sant Cugat and in February 2017 she opened with Bernat Daviu Bombon projects, in which she is currently working.
April Walton (England, 2000)
I’m a painter, I rarely go outside of painting in my practice. I use mixed media which mainly includes spray-paint and acrylic paint. I like to used my hands as well as a paint brush to create different textures. I tend to do quite abstract backgrounds and then I like to place an object or lines and patterns on top. Alot of my work is inspired by music,gigs and concert culture as well as the Y2K era but I also like to explore other concepts but that is what I’m mainly focused on in the present moment and will continue to do so.
Aldo Urbano (Barcelona, 1991)
Aldo Urbano Perez has a degree in Fine Arts from the University of Barcelona. In his work he creates enigmas whose ultimate meaning escapes him, especially himself. Through painting, he investigates the mechanisms of perception in search of a renovating experience, creating installations in which this type of experience may be possible. His work also drifts towards drawing and writing, with which he adopts narrative forms similar to comics in which irony and humour are present.
He has shown his work individually in exhibitions such as “El mismo color […]” (Bombon Projects, 2017), “Durante un experimento alrededor […]” (EtHall, 2018) or “Imitar el movimiento de un espejismo” (Galeria Balaguer, 2016), and has participated in collective projects such as the Composicions programme (together with Anna Dot, 2018), “Assumpte: una forta intuïció” (with Daniel Moreno, MNAC, 2018), “Falla” (with Ayelen Perenessi, Fundació Arranz Bravo, 2016), “El 85% de la matèria” (Centre d’Art Maristany, 2017) or “Tinta fresca” (Centre d’Art La Panera 2018). He has been selected to participate in artistic residencies such as Sandarbh Artist Residency (India, 2014) or Can Serrat (Catalonia, 2016), and his work has been recognized with the GAC Award to the emerging artist 2018, the Guasch Coranty Grant 2014 or the editing grant of the Sala d’Art Jove.
Leyli Alakbarova (Azerbaijan, 1980)
Leyli Alakbarova is an artist working with video and textile. Her interest is in showcasing her culture and upbringing through usage of imagery from her native Azerbaijan. She is creating the link between objects or people from the past to our current reality. Being a child born and raised in the Soviet Union she uses objects of that period in time to talk about issues women were dealing with then and now.
In her videos as well as her textile work she is interested in how а woman expressеs herself in everyday live, in particular through the way she dresses. In her abstract textile pieces she often works with the off-cuts from the tailors that tell a story about women who make the dresses as well as about those who wear them.
She recently showed her work in Museum of Modern Art (Baku, Azerbaijan) and The Museum of Azerbaijani Painting of the XX-XXI centuries (Baku, Azerbaijan).
Arash Fayez (Tehran, 1984)
Arash Fayez is an artist based between Madrid and Barcelona. He has a bachelor in architecture from the university of Soureh (Tehran, Iran) and a Masters in Fine Arts from California College the Arts (San Francisco, United States).
Fayez’s practice investigates the condition of displacement in relation to desire where he researches notions such as statelessness, limbo, and in-betweenness. Spanning writing, performance, and video, his projects explore the condition of a mind in limbo as a result of the body in between; or, in other words, the mental and physical states of being in limbo as a result of being between two locations, two cultures, or two identities. His practice looks at the segment that separates these two phenomena and aim its audience to neither one place nor another but to what can be found in between. His work is primarily based on autobiographical experiences interlaced with fictional and nonfictional content. By employing storytelling strategies, he combines fiction and documentary to construct an emotional landscape that resonates with the in-between. Fayez has presented his projects at venues such as Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York); Musée du quai Branly (Paris); the British Museum (London); the Wattis Institute (San Francisco); Asian Art Museum (San Francisco); Württembergischer Kunstverein (Stuttgart); Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA); Cineteca Matadero (Madrid); and La Virreina Centro de la Imagen (Barcelona). He is currently a fellow artist at the Académie de France (Casa de Velázquez) to develop his new film “A Game of Chess” and a publication “Apolis”.
Marina Bethanis (Brazil, 1995)
Serafín Álvarez (León, 1985)
Serafín Álvarez is an artist and researcher born in León (Spain) and now lives and works in Barcelona.
His work focuses on popular media depictions of subjective experiences mediated by technological and scientific developments, specially changes in the perception of reality. His most recent projects develop heterogeneous approaches to various aspects of science fiction, specially how concepts associated with otherness and the journey into the unknown are represented in contemporary audiovisual media such as cinema and video games, through work methodologies that reproduce certain creative practices commonly used by fan audiences of the genre.
He has a BA and a MA from the University of Barcelona, where he is currently doing a research project on transmedia expansion of science fiction as part of his PhD. He has shown his work at centres such as Asakusa (Tokyo), CA2M (Móstoles), CAC (Vilnius), Junefirst Gallery (Berlin), MACBA (Barcelona), MUSAC (León), La Panera (Lleida) and Trafó (Budapest) amongst others.
Apart from his artistic and academic practices, other projects include Ona, an art educational program that he curates at Sant Andreu Contemporani; Gravitacions, an art educational project that he runs at Fundació Joan Miró’s Espai 13; and Sons de Barcelona, a pedagogical project linked to the Music Technology Group at Pompeu Fabra University.
Cristina Reid Martínez
Cristina Reid (USA, 1993)
Cristina Reid is a multidisciplinary artist working across video, installation and mixed media. Her research based practice deals with the collection, manipulation, fragmentation and distortion of imagery and information and how it is experienced. She is interested in how images function, how they are read, and the narratives and interconnections that occur when disparate images are brought into proximity. Through her investigation of how images and information is circulated, disseminated and archived through time, she explores more profoundly the gaps in these archives, stories and collective and personal memories. Her past studies in art history and archival background influences her practice, as each work stems from a personal archive of images, both physical and digital, which she pulls inspiration from.
Eulàlia Rovira (Barcelona, 1985)
Eulàlia Rovira has a degree in Fine Arts and a master’s degree in Art in Context from the UdK-Berlin. Her practice follows the foundations that structure western rectitude and how they slowly petrify in bodies and language.
She has recently exhibited at Twin Gallery (Madrid), Capella de Sant Roc (Valls), La Panera Art Center (Lleida), M|A|C (Mataró), Maristany Art Center (Sant Cugat) and Injuve’s Sala Amadís (Madrid).
Since 2013 she collaborates with the artist Adrian Schindler. Together they have exhibited at the Musée de Bibracte (Saint-Léger-sur-Beuvray, FR), Sala Muncunill (Terrassa), Homesession and Fireplace (Barcelona), and in group exhibitions or screenings such as Galerie Martin Janda (Vienna), àngelsbarcelona, EtHall (l’Hospitalet), Turf Projects (Croydon, UK), Montehermoso Cultural Center (Vitoria), ZKU – Center for Art and Urbanistics (Berlin) and La Escocesa (Barcelona). In 2018 they were awarded with the Fundació Güell Visual Arts Grant.
Eléa Orengo de Lamazière
Eléa Orengo de Lamazière (South Africa, 1999)
Eléa Orengo de Lamazière is an interdisciplinary artist born and raised in South Africa and currently based in Barcelona. Her approach and sensitivity to sensorial experiences have driven her work as well as her research into the realms of playing with one’s senses. She focuses her work in the direction of the natural world as well as our direct visual perceptions within our surroundings. Through site specific installations incorporating bodies of liquid and refracted video projections she invites her viewers to experience their own perspective of ever changing captures of light, sound and colors. Within these she also incorporates her video work in which she captures the world around her with the notion of everything is the same, everything is equal, each being and inanimate object deserve their representation in her eye. She then uses her footage to create abstracted realms closely resembling our own yet through layering and green screening may feel almost dream like with subtle hints of our our worlds own way of abstracting itself. To allow the viewer to experience different reactions within their nervous system she works through creating immersive environments which allows for this.
Having had her video work as the red thread throughout all her pieces and installations she is now also directing and exploring the possibilities of her work entering the nightlife through form of visuals as she believes strongly in the power of sound and how sound combined with visual can have incredible impact on one’s nervous system and mental well-being.
Paula Bruna (Barcelona, 1978)
Paula Bruna is a Spanish artist and environmentalist. Both professions have converged in her artistic projects, in which she works on alternative narratives to the Anthropocene from non-human points of view, through a combination of science facts, speculative fiction and artistic practices. Her hypothesis is that exploring points of view other than the actual anthropocentrism has significant effects on ecological awareness and opens up the range of possible ways of cohabitation.
Paula holds a PhD in Fine Arts at the University of Barcelona with a thesis on art and political ecology. She shares her research and artwork in national and international congresses, publications, workshops, artistic events and exhibitions. Her artistic research has been awarded with several Catalan grants. She has stayed at national and international artist residencies, with particular interest in those with ecological approaches.
Agustín Ortiz Herrera
Anais Delforge-Mistry (UK, 2001)
Anais Delforge-Mistry enjoys working with various mediums, such as fabrics, jute and organic materials. She usually works with fragile, everyday materials, often collecting things from the streets. The majority of Anais’ focuses on the process which allows her to have less pressure on creating an aesthetically pleasing piece of work. Each piece of work feels very personal and vulnerable, as she often uses her work to explore difficult topics.
Agustín Ortiz Herrera (Barcelona, 1970)
Agustín Ortiz Herrera’s artistic practice is developed in the fields of audiovisual, performance and installation. He uses these media to activate the queer perspective in a patriarchal-colonialist context nurtured by the dominance of audiovisual persuasion and the normative representation of memory.
His recent exhibitions and collaborations include the Center d’Art Santa Mónica, La Escocesa-CREAF, CCCB, The Green Parrot, Center d’Art Maristany, Barcelona Loop Festival, Hangar Public Program, La Capella/Barcelona Producció and Uppsala Konsert & Kongress to name a few. In 2021 his work “Fungi Fantasy and their friends Crazy Bacteria” was acquired by the MACBA collection.
Final Exhibition (graduation show)
Saturday 10th June, 2023
Location: Joan Prats WAREHOUSE, Passatge de Saladrigas, 5, 08005 Barcelona.
Get to see the artworks after the Thesis Presentations and meet the artists and their tutors. This year, the Final Exhibition curated by Gabriel Virgilio Luciani will be held at the Joan Prats WAREHOUSE in Poblenou.
Everyone is invited!