Wexler Gallery presents Osmosis– an exhibition of three women artists from Mexico City: Valerie Campos, Perla Krauze, and Maribel Portela. Campos, Krauze, and Portela each work in different mediums, but their works all reveal various impressions of the artists' natural surroundings permeating the conscious or the subconscious and sometimes back again.
Valerie Campos, a self-taught artist born in Mexico City and raised in Los Angeles, is forever seeking, traveling, observing, sketching, and painting. Inspired by her regular immersions in places outside of her Mexico City home, Campos’ large-scale paintings are a blend of her inner experiences and outward influences, both historical and personal.
Expertly "dancing" about the canvas with instinctive rhythm, color, and form, Valerie explores the liminal space between the conscious and unconscious worlds, striking a balance between chaos and order. Often with thick brushstrokes of vivid tones, Campos explores abstract forms applied within the composition through universal architectural marks to convey a sense of timelessness, playing with the viewer's impressions on emotional, visual, and physical levels.
For artist Perla Krauze, duality is a concept that informs her artistic endeavors. The light, the heavy; the ephemeral, the permanent. Chaos and order. The desire to integrate things that don’t normally go together is what drives her.
Krauze, both a painter and a sculptor, studied graphic design before traveling to London and earning a diploma in Textiles from Goldsmiths College as well as a master’s degree at the Chelsea College of Art. Her work, often created using found or discarded materials, deals with time, memory, nature, and dualities — making the overlooked somehow visible. Influenced by modernist architects who have left their imprint on Mexico, Krauze developed her language and discovered that the essence of Mexico itself — its volcanic ruins and archaeological sites, its mythical and primordial qualities — was her most profound inspiration.
“Perla Krauze is not only an artist; she is a sort of interpreter that seems to know the language of stones and plants,” says UNAM professor of Art History, Esteban García Brosseau. She speaks to the earth in pilgrimage, bringing her canvases to sacred natural environments and physically making rubbings, or impressions of the minerals, paths, cracks, and mysteries, that speak to her, to then weave them into a deeper conversation in her studio. Her artwork is a contemplation and communion with the natural world that influences her.
Maribel Portela was born in Mexico, where she lives and makes art. While her artistic expression is grounded in her studies at the National School of Arts in Mexico City (UNAM), her artwork emerges from a much broader universe of influence. Notions of time, space, and existence combine with ideas of the transformation of the natural world, often by humans or technology, in an exploration Portela calls, altered/artificial nature or natural artifice. Regarding her work, Portela explains, “I have always tried to explore the relationship of human beings with the cosmos.”
Like the dualities that inspire Krauze’s art, Portela is driven by the bond “expressed through fears and epiphanies, passions and hates, creation and destruction, dreams of the imagination and the solidity of reality.” Her organic sculptures transform beautiful natural organisms into something more mysterious by recontextualizing them in synthetic, man-made materials. This metamorphosis captures the duality of existence and impermanence.
Osmosis also marks Wexler Gallery’s debut collaboration with Mexico City-based Atra Studio. Various and rotating furniture designs by Atra founder Alexander Díaz Andersson will be in situ with works by Campos, Krauze, and Portela.