“A fascinating group of interviews with major women artists from around the world, Hugo Huerta Marin’s thoughtful Portrait of an Artist explores in an intimate and compelling way each artist’s practice and beliefs about power, celebrity, gender, and art. Huerta Marin puts himself on the line to embrace the power of these amazons of the art world. From radical feminist activists to conceptualists, sculptors to installation and performance artists, the work and ideas of these radical women represent the full range of contemporary art. Replete with numerous images and a “portrait” of each artist based on her lock of hair, Portrait of an Artist proves the absolute centrality of women’s practices to visual culture today.”
-Amelia Jones, American art historian, art critic and curator
Within his first artist book, Huerta Marin creates a dialogue with seven extraordinary female artists: Marina Abramović, Tania Bruguera, Tracey Emin, Shirin Neshat, ORLAN, Yoko Ono, and Kiki Smith to explore the subjects of gender and studio-practice. Portrait of an Artist presents documentation of these artists’ visual, photographic, sculptural, and performance art alongside Huerta Marin’s illuminating interviews. Further, as an artist bookwork, the project includes photographic portraits by Huerta Marin created with locks of hair collected from each of the artists during their studio visits. The result is a book that is transgressive, vulnerable, and reflective.
As a young artist, Huerta Marin’s experience of working alongside these legendary artists was life changing. Describing his motivation behind the project, Huerta Marin explains, “Patti Smith said most of her poems were written to women because women are most inspiring. She asked, ‘Who are most artists? Men. Who do they get inspired by? Women.’ My work is an attempt to create counter narratives that emphasize the correlation between creating and thinking. Portrait of an Artist is a project inspired by seven remarkable female artists that drive culture by shaking the structures of established belief systems. They have no rules. They break all the borders. And their voice should resonate throughout the new generations of artists.”