With a career spanning eighty years, Luchita Hurtado is only now receiving the recognition she so rightly deserves. The 98-year old Venezuelan-born artist, who has produced an extensive body of work that has rarely been seen in public until recently, has not only been featured in Time magazine’s list of the 100 most influential people of 2019, but is staging her first UK solo exhibition this summer at London’s Serpentine Sackler Gallery.
Entitled ‘I Live I Die I Will Be Reborn’, the exhibition traces the trajectory of Hurtado’s career, revealing the scale, experimentation and playfulness of her artistic talent. From her earliest surviving works from the late 1930s and experiments with abstraction in the 1940s and 50s, to her later creations, pieces reflect her vision of the human body as a part of the world, not separate from it, and take herself and her immediate surroundings as her subject, as well as the more expansive themes of nature and language.
Hurtado moved from Venezuela to the United States in 1928, and in addition to her work as an artist, she is a poet, ecologist, and an activist, and can also count photography and fashion design among her talents. She has spent time with many other renowned creatives, including Isamu Noguchi, Rufino Tamayo, Frida Kahlo, Marcel Duchamp and Willem de Kooning, and her marriages to the artists Wolfgang Paalen and Lee Mullican placed her at the center of the Surrealist scene in Mexico City and the progressive Dynaton movement in California.
Hurtado’s work does not reflect historical art trends or conventions, and over the years she has developed a diverse oeuvre which is clearly reflected in this new exhibition.
‘Luchita Hurtado: I Live I Die I will Be Reborn’ runs from 23rd May until 20th October.