b. 1963, Havana
Juana Valdés (b. 1963, Havana) examines the post-colonial history of the Americas and the current representation of Latinos, Caribbean citizens, Blacks or what the current “Other” in mainstream America, reflecting on what is ascribed, contested, and granted. She has also addressed issues of migration and diaspora. In her most current series, Valdés arranges ceramic ornaments mass-produced from all over the world into tableaux meant to function as ethnic and religious identification signs that carry aesthetic value of the social class collecting them. These images weave a narrative of historical periods, styles and modes of production.
Valdes’ has participated in numerous group and solo exhibitions. These include “Treasure Island,” at the Lower Eastside Print Shop, “Third Space: Inventing the Impossible” at the Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami, “Remnants-What Remains,” at the Thomas Hunter Project Space, CUNY, Hudson River Museum, Art in General, El Museo del Barrio, White Box Gallery, Bronx River Art Center, P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, Paul Sharpe Contemporary Art, Diaspora Vibe Cultural Arts Incubator and Nohra Haime Gallery. Valdes has been an active participant in national and international residencies that include: VAN Artist-in-Residency (2014), the European Ceramic Work Center in the Netherlands (2012), the Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning (2009),the Atlantic Center for the Arts (2008), the Artist Residency at the Center for Book Arts (2007), the Lower East Side Print Shop, (2005), the Smack Mellon Studio Program (2004), and the P.S.1 Studio Residency Program (1998). She holds an M.F.A. in Fine Arts from the School of Visual Arts and a B.F.A. in Sculpture at Parsons School of Design in 1991. She was born in Cabañas, Pinar Del Rio, Cuba and came to the United States in 1971. Valdes is Assistant Professor of Printmaking at Florida Atlantic University in the Visual Arts and Art History Department.