Born in Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic, Scherezade Garcia‘s work focuses largely on her cultural experiences. As a child she became involved in the arts by participating in mural painting projects with visual artists Elias Delgado and Nidia Serra, influenced by their portrayals of racial and sociological themes.
“[My art] has to do with the Caribbean in general, and especially the Hispanic Caribbean – about heritage, the process of being civilized, and what civilized means, and the selling of the Caribbean as a paradise,” says Garcia.
In 1986, Garcia moved to New York as a student at Parsons School of Design, where she obtained the Parsons Institutional Scholarship and the Dana Foundation Work Grant. Garcia’s work has been continuously exhibited in museums and galleries throughout the United States, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean since 1990.
Garcia is also part of Dominican York Proyecto GRAFICA, a printmaking collective of twelve artists of Dominican descent who live and work in and around New York City. Their first project, Manifestaciones: Expressions of Dominicanidad in Nueva York, was conceived by Pepe Coronado, a peripatetic master printer whose life crossed paths with the Chicano movement.
My visual narratives generate energy, alluding to the emotional physicality of art making; and there is the urgency of a concept to keep alive. The physical and emotional experience of drawing is essential to my art making process. — Scherezade Garcia
While living in Austin, Texas, in the early 1990s, Pepe began working with Chicano artist Sam Coronado (no relation). Inspired by Sam’s work, Pepe took some of the concepts back to New York City. And now the circle is closed with Scherezade Garcia’s participation in the Serie Project’s XIX Artist in Residence program.
Garcia’s allegorical narratives appropriate and transform symbols and objects, including life jackets, inner tubes, suitcases, mattresses, tents, umbrellas, religious icons, and newspapers clippings. She works in drawing, painting, installations, artists’ books, and video animation. Through these different media, she creates contemporary allegories of history, colonization, and politics.
“My fascination with the social human experience since the ‘discovery’ of America and its multifarious results is an endless source of inspiration and an essential part of my discourse,” says Garcia.