That which is beautiful is loved,
that which is not beautiful is unloved
My work arises from the contemporary concept of feminine beauty, mainly in Western culture. Through various media such as photography, performance, graphics or on-site interventions; I explore the aesthetic processes to which women voluntarily submit themselves as well as stereotypes, beauty standards and the passing of time and its fleeting nature. From a personal experience I constantly seek to embody the sets of values that are understood as "femininity ideal" pointing them out through the artistic exercise.
To me, observing the phenomenon of beauty and the ritual that precedes it is not as superficial as it often seems. Some historians and sociologists, such as Georges Vigarello show how, through a historical review of the body and its beauty, we may also observe the evolution of society and thus give an account of the dominant social esteem. For example, once a woman of great proportions was idle while a hardened skin was only for those who had to work long hours under the sun. For today's society, obesity is considered a disease and tanned skin a luxury. Through projects like Yes, We Tan! or That who wants to be beautiful, must suffer among others, I work on such collective concerns from the absurd or the subtle to the explicit and violent.
Among the artists who have had a great influence on my work, the most notable is Luis Buñuel whose work is driven by his own obsessions. He would say about Catherine Deneuve: "...she's not exactly my type of woman, but with a limp and make-up I find her very attractive" referring to an interview about his film: Tristana. The duality between the erotic and the grotesque is equally present in my work in pieces like I love you, me neither where through the sensual melody of Serge Gainsbourg (Je T'aime moi, non plus, 1968) the audience is transported through the rawness of an aesthetic surgery into an erotic dialogue, even a loving one.
Without seeking criticism from a feminist perspective but rather a reflection from the feminine, my intention is to document forms of life and invite the viewer not only to contemplate but also think about on that which moves us to transform our bodies, the way we look, the way we wish to see ourselves and be seen.
Alejandra Baltazares, 2020