Paula Valenzuela (b. Santiago de Chile) draws her inspiration from the textures, colors and organic forms found in nature, especially the desert, the skies and the collective symbols used by ancient cultures. These elements are woven into a complex visual dialogue that hints at the underlying feelings and complexity of our lives. She relies on her former career as a clinical psychotherapist to explore the connection of darkness and light within us, the complexity of our personality – what we show to others and what we keep to ourselves – and the interconnection of conscious and unconscious aspects in our lives. She’s interested in exploring the space between reality and daydreaming, where the unconscious aspects of our inner world can come to the surface, making visible what was invisible before.
Paula’s signature style consists of the creation of complex layers of paint which are covered and excavated over and over in order to bring the hidden history to the surface. She pours layers of liquid acrylic paint onto canvases and paints polygonal shapes or spirals. She uses acrylics, resins, pigments, minerals, rust, varnishes, gels, oil sticks and cold wax. Paula's technique is tactile. She plays with the texture of painting, endlessly editing the surface. Before the paint can dry, Paula is back on it. She scratches the artwork, tears paper layers, makes dents and new marks. She removes layers and adds new layers again.
Paula has been living in the United States since 2013. Her studio is in the Industrial Center Building in Sausalito, California and her work can be found in private collections in Chile and the United States.