Marta María Pérez-Bravo
Marta Maria Pérez Bravo was born in Havana, Cuba (1959). She studied at the Instituto Superior de Arte and at the San Alejandro Academy of Fine Arts, both in Havana. She graduated from San Alejandro in 1979.
Her enigmatic and poetic photographs are emblematic tableaux inspired by the spiritual beliefs and artifacts related to Palo Monte, the African-based religion she practices. Using her body as an altar, Pérez Bravo incorporates symbolic objects associated with her faith and personal rituals. Both as a Cuban exile and as a contemporary practitioner of ancestral beliefs, Pérez Bravo creates powerful dreamlike visions that serve as metaphors of the interconnectedness between spirituality, cultural memory and displacement.
Pérez Bravo is one of the most acclaimed contemporary Cuban photographers. She has exhibited extensively around the world, (Cuba, Finland, Germany, Canada, Colombia, Mexico, Spain, Brazil, Italy, and Venezuela). In the U.S., Pérez Bravo has had solo exhibitions in New York, Dallas and Los Angeles.
Her first international exhibitions came in 1988, when she exhibited at the Museo Carrillo Gil in Mexico City, the Contemporary Art Museum in Lima, Peru and the Museum of Modern Art in Caracas, Venezuela. A year later she was selected to represent Cuba III Havana Bienal, further bringing her work to the eyes of international curators and gallery owners. A year later she represented Cuba at the XXI Sao Paulo Biennial in Brazil and exhibited in the US at the Bronx Art Museum’s acclaimed “Art and Cuba Now” exhibition.
Pérez Bravo has also represented Cuba at the IV Havana Bienal, the V Istanbul Biennial in Turkey, the Kwangju Biennale in South Korea. Her work has been also included in many museum exhibitions, most notably at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Museo del Barrio, New York, Museum of Contemporary Art, Brisbane, Australia, Museum Fridericianum, Kassel, Germany, Muesarnok Museum, Budapest, Hungary, Alejandro Otero Museum of Visual Arts, Caracas, Venezuela, Winnipeg Art Gallery and the National Art Gallery in Ottawa, Canada, Menil Collection in Houston, Louisiana Museum for Moderne Kunst, Copenhagen, Denmark, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas, Wichita Art Museum, Kansas, Museum of Fine Arts, Santa Fe, New Mexico, Mead Museum of Art, Amherst, Massachusetts, Miami Art Museum, Florida, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
Her photographs are in the permanent collection of the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, Texas, the Museum of Art, Pori, Finland, The National Museum of Fine Arts, Havana, Cuba, the Ludwig Forum, Aachen, Germany, the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid, and the Museo Español e Iberoamericano de Arte Contemporáneo, Badajoz, Spain and the Norton Collection.
She lives and works in Monterrey, Mexico.