About Self-Portraits International Project 2006-2016

“There’s no reason not to check out the beauty, the inquiry, the self-awareness, the reflection, the profundity, the whimsy of Self-Portraits: An International Project and Traveling Exhibition” –-Self-Portraits Exhibition Press Review

Look at this catalogue, look at the exhibition if it comes your way or check it out on-line: you will find a world of rich ideas and possibilities, executed in an amazing variety of mediums, presented in a wide range of ways, and divided into a nine thematic groupings. For all this richness and diversity, not to mention the high levels of imaginative, technical and contextual skills that are presented, what you are looking at (…) is completely remarkable, something that has never been done before, which would be difficult to repeat, and yet is capable of being continued and extended in any country in the world, in ways that are probably limitless”.
Richard Noyce, British art writer, author of the trilogy “Printmaking in the Edge” (2006), “Critical Mass: Printmaking Beyond the Edge” (2010) and “Printmaking Off the Beating Track” (2013). wales, 2013. From an essay in the Self-Portraits book.

The Self-Portraits Project is an art work-in-progress that Argentine artist Alicia Candiani has been developing since 2006 in which worldwide artists have been addressing controversial issues–including cultural and sexual identity, race, gender, clan and class–that deal with the self and the body. The aging and illness processes, the construction of gender and race through stereotypes as well as self-portrait art history’s images appropriation, among others fascinating in puts on the artists and their context, have also been explored along the project’s journey which spans 10 years. Today, it includes 90 artists with 11 citizenships, who speak five languages, and have produced 93 pieces during 8 sessions, hosted by major art institutions in six countries: Argentina, Brazil, Canada the United States, Sweden and Spain.

The project has an ongoing output: a mural installation exploring participating artists and students common concerns. The mural installation is organized in nine main assemblages: Politics / Identities / Dreamland / Territories / Languages / Ironies / “Mise en Scène” / Wounds and Displacements. This piece, in the format of a traveling exhibition, is touring the world. It has been already exhibited in Alaska, Canada and Spain. 

Alicia Candiani, as project director, travels and works with artists and students from diverse races, ages and latitudes as well in different stages of their artistic careers. Each group produces a set of self-portraits including Alicia’s portrait who continues to develop a self-portrait in each of the places that she travels. Sessions have also co-directors, usually an artist from the host institution. In addition, there are some guest artists who have not participated in the sessions but have been invited to join the project.

Made possible with support from the Global Education Center, Argentine artist Alicia Candiani is the Global Education Scholar and visiting artist for 2016.  Candiani launches n April 2016 a new session of the Self-Portrait Project at Montclair State University (USA),  College of the Arts, Department of Art and Design, with Professor Catherine Bebout, BA/BFA Director, as co-director of the project, Professor Andrew Atkinson, MFA Director and Assistant Professor of Digital Photography as an active participant, and MFA student Natalia Borisensko acting as coordinator with the interactive participants. The collaborative project is a tremendous opportunity for students at Monclair State, where they are invited to contribute to the global art project to work far beyond the frontiers of their local creative community, allowing their art practice to become a part of a global dialogue.

The Montclair Session [9th] is an special project  among the Self-Portrait series that started in 2006 at the Pilar i Joan Miró Foundation in Palma de Mallorca (1st Session:September/06) and the University of Castilla-La Mancha, Cuenca Campus (2nd Session: October/06) both in Spain. In June 2007 the 3rd Session took place in Buenos Aires city at Proyecto´ace. The Fourth Session was at Grafikens Hus in Mariefred, Sweden in October/November 2007 while the Fifth Session took place in Atelier Presse Papier, Trois Rivieres, Canada in September 2008. The Sixth Session was hosted by the Atelier Livre and the 23 Cidade de Porto Alegre Art Festival in Porto Alegre, Brazil during July 2009 , the 7th Session was developed at MTG Gallery in collaboration with University of Alaska in Anchorage, Alaska during October 2010 and the last session [8th] was hosted at the Kansas City art Institute in 2011.

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