Sandra, let’s act as if we had normal times and would sit together now. Where do we speak together? We are in my Studio in the Hasenheide in the middle of the city near Südstern in Kreuzberg Maybe we are sitting at your favorite place. My studio is an old flat, wood floor, high ceilings not renovated, very charming view (Erker Zimmer), I use to sit there because it is the lighter place. Where do you come from, where were you born when? I come from Viña del Mar which is a city on the coast of Chile in front the Pacific Ocean. Where do you currently live and work? I live and work in Berlin and Sweden. Which stations and people have shaped you? I was in Santiago de Chile in 1988, 1989 was the first presidential vote after 16 years of dictatorship, in 1995 I met Jannis Kounellis and I stayed in Germany for one and a half year, afterwards I came back to Chile and 2000 I finally moved to Germany, first to Dusseldorf and since ten years I’m living in Berlin. Which books have influenced or shaped you and what are you currently reading? Many Books have been influencing my work and my way to think. Firstly, I need to think of Nicanor Parra, about visual poetry and then of Roberto Bolaño who was thinking about different ways of exile, and then also Italo Calvino for the magic of “Il Castello dei camini Incrociati”, and Mircea Eliade about Shamanism’s. In this moment Lisa See and “The Island of the Woman’s” What music do you listen to and when? I hear music going in the train. I love different styles; I never mind discovering some very contemporary music. Soul has been my passion since childhood. My first album was Aretha Franklin. We travelled so much, and I discovered Samba with Clara Nunes, Brazilian music I hear a lot but also a lot of Spanish boleros, Portuguese Fado and also Indie and some Chillout music. If you would cook something for us, what would it be? What do you like to eat most and what do you think about breakfast? My favorite is to cook risotto with artichokes and if I think about breakfast: I die without a good Cappuccino! What kind of sport or counterbalance do you practice? Biking makes my day, and also swimming in the lake or the ocean. Do you have special passions for which you are burning, and if so, which ones? I have a kind of Sherlock Holmes instinct: I like to discover how people lived in another centuries. For this I can search objects for hours and try to imagine how it was in the historical times when pioneer people left Sweden in the Black Summer to colonize USA. Do you have a concern that you would like to share with us, or a personality trait that defines you, special thoughts, a fetish, typical idiosyncrasies? I really love Berlin. This city with creative people from all around the World. I think we learn a lot about tolerance and solidarity every day and we need to be aware that this individualism needs to change. I open the door a lot for young artists that are interested in talking about art.
Sandra Vásquez de la Horra, Foto Julia Hrnčírovà
To begin, please tell us your artistic vita in a few sentences.
I have been participating in different exhibitions around the world; more recently a lot in Asia. For very long, I have been part of the artists’ community being interested in drawing.
Two sentences about your current project / the upcoming exhibition at Gallery Weekend.
The pieces of the show are constantly moving, like pathos, looking for sense, for answers to so many questions.
Manifesting a life motive, reflecting about Myths and Religions and sense of the life, this projects dives into deepest waters.
What are you most concerned about at the moment; what is on your mind?
I want to move back to the centre, back to the essential.
Artist Studio Sandra Vásquez de la Horra
How did you come to art? Why art?
I was born with this vision; the Jungian School taught me to build bridges between cultures. That is what I want to express with my art.
What makes you happy at the moment? What is currently scaring you?
I´m glad if I can sleep peacefully and be near the ones I love. The limitation of moving scared me.
Do you believe that art has a social responsibility? And what do you think it can do?
Yes, we are the ones searching for truths and sense in this life, giving message to transcend our own temporary existence.
What makes your art special? What are the central themes of your work?
My work talks about different levels of conciseness. I try to open a portal to another dimension.
Sandra Vásquez de la Horra, Erupciones, 2019
How do you protect yourself from too much inspiration these days?
I walk in the forest and try to be here and now.
How much in your works is planned in advance – how much is created intuitively?
The dialogue is constant. The images are there waiting to be picked up. The way to let them manifest is an interpretation like it is in music.
What should your art effect on the viewer?
It´s not for everyone. Number one: you need to experience it live, because it has some aura – some people can feel this energy, like a soul.
Artist Studio Sandra Vásquez de la Horra
What are your (next) goals?
I work only for inspiration, I don´t make any series. I don´t have a plan or calculation for the future. I let it happen only.
What is your opinion about faith? Do you have principles of faith or is there a motto?
I learned to faith Tai Chi but after I experience things are sometimes only destiny and you need to accept life like it comes.
Which project would you still like to realize, if lack of time, courage or financial resources would not play a role?
I´m going more and more into painting in this time and I want to make some very big formats.
Sandra Vásquez de la Horra, Belcebú, 2014 Tryptych
What do you consider to be attributes of good art?
Vibrations are the soul of the work.
Is one born as an artist*? Or is studying art compulsory in your view?
Born artist definitively.
To whom do you show a new work first?
Mostly, I show it to my daughter first.
What does the first hour of your day look like?
First, I look out of the window, slowly catching the light, slowly waking up, looking at the plants like saying hello to another day!
In Times of the internet of things, are galleries (from your point of view) still necessary? If so, why and what for?
To look at a piece of art is an experience, hence, I think galleries are still completely necessary.
Social media – in your view a blessing or a curse?
Both. We are victims of technology. It doesn’t leave us time to think, to choose. If you have a choice after you regret and slowly it makes you a complete addict.
The exhibition with new works by Sandra Vásquez de la Horra can be seen from 10 September to 17 October 2020 at Galerie Michael Haas, Niebuhrstraße 5, 10629 Berlin-Charlottenburg. For Berlin Art Week and Gallery Weekend the gallery offers special opening hours: Mon 07.09. + Tue 08.09. 9 pm – 6 pm, Wed 09.09. to Sun 13.09. 10 am – 7 pm
In times of Corona, when travel, studio visits and personal contacts are inappropriate or even impossible, the written interview remains a medium to introduce artist personalities, spread messages and stay in touch with art enthusiasts.
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