Juan Pablo Echeverri
Colombia, b. 1978
In both his photography and video work, Echeverri creates a universe in which he portrays ‘fantastical’ beings that depict endless possible forms of self-representation in contemporary visual culture. The artist himself em-bodies diﬀerent types of personas by cross-dressing as characters to playfully challenge ways in which identity is negotiated in today’s vast ﬁeld of image making. In his series futuroSEXtraño (2016), artiﬁcial light emanates on the back of various characters being photographed. The subjects are backlit and their silhouettes differ depending on the eccentricities of their attire. This multiplicity of identities reﬂects the artist’s commentary on the way people present themselves in social media — one oft en appears to be performing unlimited representations of the self to seek approval and acceptance of others. Echeverri’s work alludes to the certain emptiness and the lack of an authentic personality, which is represented in the facelessness of these individuals who are trapped in their own image making. The title of the piece, which translates as ‘future strangers’, also questions how that artiﬁce of the self acts as an avatar within online sociability. How can we befriend strangers that come and go when they were truly never there?How can we appear to have large social networks yet simultaneously experience extreme loneliness?
Juan Pablo Echeverri’s work has focused on identity in portraiture for the past nineteen years. He has presented many solo shows including: Around the World in 80 Gays, Galería ASAB, Bogotá, (2016); miMundoscuro, Museo de Arte de Pereira, Colombia (2015); and APOCALIPSYNCH, Hudson Gallery, Provincetown, MA, USA (2015). Recent group shows include: Up All Night, LUMP, USA; La Vuelta, Les Rencontres de la Photographie, Arles, France; and From Selﬁe to Self Expression, Saatchi Gallery, London (2017). His work was included in Younger than Jesus Directory, published by the New Museum and Phaidon in 2009.
(Text: 38th EVA International catalogue)
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