Bio

ALEXANDRA GELIS LOMBANA
 info@alexandragelis.com  |    alexgelis@gmail.com
Canada: +1 (647) 501.2535

www.alexandragelis.com          |            www.consecuencias.org          |           www.autorganizaciones.com

Alexandra Gelis is a Colombian-Venezuelan artist living and working in Toronto, Ontario. Her studio practice combines new media, installation, and photography with custom built interactive electronics. Her projects incorporate personal field research as a tool to investigate the ecologies of various landscapes through examining the traces left by various socio-political interventions. She uses data capture techniques, video, sound, and spatial and electronic media to create documentary based immersive installations; single-channel videos, and experimental photography. She has exhibited internationally in North and South America, Europe as well as Ethiopia in Africa.

Alexandra Gelis has been the recipient of numerous prizes and awards, including the prestigious Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council, Colombian Minister of Culture. Her research has been supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ministry of Culture of Colombia. She also won the Colciencias Doctoral Fellowship Program for her Ph.D. research “Environmental History and Aesthetics of Invasive Plants in Equinoctial America: An Arts-Based Inquiry”.

 



 

Alexandra Gelis is a Colombian-Venezuela Canada based artist. Her studio initially focused in an experimental practice which combines new media, installation, audio-visual and photography with custom built interactive electronics. – Raspao (Snow Cone), Afectos Descentrados, Intersecting field, Sewing the Woods (2011 – 1012)-

This approach, which focused mainly on the ethical and political possibilities of DIY technologies and process-oriented practices, lead her to the setup of a series of educational projects.  Her experimentation with electronic media, photography and with audio-visual, became a tool of self-narration and individual liberation for specific communities (marginalized youth, sex trans workers, and queer excluded) in Colombia, Panama, and Canada.  – Personidos,  series of workshops in Panama, Colombia, and Canada with conSECUENCIAS Collective-

The use of data capture techniques, video, sound, and spatial and electronic media are at the same time a tool for multidisciplinary inquirer which engage multiple explorations of diverse methodologies in fieldwork and the media for the production of non-fiction based immersive installations; single-channel videos, and experimental photography.  

Mostly, her projects incorporate personal field research as a tool to investigate the ecologies of various landscapes and human-scapes through examining the traces left by various socio-political interventions.  Through readings of environmental history in Latin America, Gelis explores collective memory, folklore, cinema, literature and the cultural production at large of specific communities or societies. She focuses on the relationship between nature and culture, politics, history, power.

Lately, as a development of her site-specific, sociological field-research processes, Gelis got immersed in a new research which focuses on her hypotheses that migrant plant can be we use as biopolitical tools of control, that change communities and territories, even as they are transformed through human interaction.

She became Ph.D. candidate in Environmental Studies at York University to acquire the academic competence in the field of Environmental History. She chose to follow a  distinctive approach on Latin America, necessary to develop Environmental History and Aesthetics of Migrated Plants in Equinoctial America. An Arts-Based Inquiry. It proposes an interdisciplinary research and production project that will take the form of an investigation drawing on the environmental history of Latin America, field work, biological research, and her practice as a multidisciplinary artist in order to explore how botany has been used as a tool for politics to develop policies in South America. One of the main goals of her research is to examine the dialectical relationship between people and plants in Equinoctial America, looking at the region’s history of colonialism and resistance, as well as Latin America’s environmental history. Over the past five years, she has explored these questions through artistic productions in Panama, Colombia, and Mexico.
Panama Project, Estera: Medicinal plants and Resistance,  CERCA-VIVA espacios espinosos / dispersiones alelopáticas – from the series migrated plants– (from 2013 -now).

From 2015, Gelis is co-directing The Legacies Project: from Earth to Table. An intergenerational and intercultural exchange of knowledge to transform the food system. With a participatory methodology and theoretical Framework between Decolonizing art, education and research; the project aims the Co-creation of visual tools for food sovereignty education.

She has exhibited internationally in North, South America, Europe, and Africa and she holds an MFA degree from the same university, Toronto, Canada.

 

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