Teresa Bracamonte
I Am Your Fantasy

13 October - 26 October 2023

Arthus Gallery

Peruvian artist, resident in Paris since 2017, Teresa Bracamonte led a modeling career in Lima from the age of 18 to 26. Immersed in the world of beauty dictates and the use of her image for commercial purposes, she decided to “play the game” to finance her artistic projects.

She left fashion to devote herself entirely to photography. With her camera in hand, she opened up to other realities, notably Lima's underworld, and photographed transsexuals, marginalized people and the world of prostitution. This approach contributes to her quest for identity and the reappropriation of her body and image.

In 2020, Teresa painted portraits of nude women, then gradually transgressed the taboo of self-portraiture to produce a series of fascinating self-portraits in 2022, disturbing in their seductiveness and violence, in which she embodies men's dreams of sensuality and draws them into a sweet and dangerous reverie. A painter of the body, gestural, with free brushstrokes, her contrasting compositions in clairobscur leave the sketch visible on reclaimed wood boards and canvas. Her portraits and self-portraits, with their slightly oversized bodies, convey an ambiguous feeling of provocation and desire; the frontal gazes challenge the viewer. The paintings seem unfinished, the brushstrokes vibrate, as do the bodies of the symbolic female figures embodied by Teresa: femmes fatales, saints, prostitutes, BDSM figures, erotica, pornography. Bodies in their provocative nudity evolve, mutate, show themselves and then hide, escaping us... desire awakens.

For the exhibition, 'I am your Fantasy' Teresa creates a neon installation. A punchy phrase written in luminous red by the artist's own hand, evoking the red neon signs that mark out sexually exploitative neighborhoods. A cry for emancipation, it invites women to react, to regain possession of their bodies, their image, their lives. Teresa Bracamonte's art is rooted in the history of femininity, questioning the place of women in society through their representation. It calls into question the mechanisms of a macho society in which women are alienated, consciously or unconsciously subjected to perverse mechanisms of punishment-reward, love or rejection. In her new series of photographic self-portraits created especially for this exhibition, Teresa metamorphoses her face into ten variations of inflatable dolls. In this crude and disturbing embodiment of an object of mass sexual consumption, she pushes the concept of the woman-object to its extreme.

For Teresa Bracamonte, superior to provocation, seduction becomes a means of communicating and questioning, ultimately creating a subtle, sensual bond with the other.

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