Rafael Pérez Evans. Spanish – Welsh (b. Málaga 1983)
Lives and works in London & Barcelona. He received a BA in Fine Art from Goldsmiths University. His work has been exhibited internationally with recent exhibitions including solo at Nogueras Blanchard (Barcelona), Queens C. (Marrakesh) & Abierto Theredoom (Madrid), Two man shows at Despina (Rio de Janeiro) and Yusto Giner Gallery (Marbella), group exhibitions at Matadero (Madrid), Hangar (Barcelona). He was recently nominated for the DKV prize 2018 (Barcelona), Miquel Casablancas Award (2017 & 2018) and Art Nou Prize 2017 (Barcelona) and was awarded with ‘A Secas’ from C.A.A.C Museum (Seville). He has completed residencies in Hangar (Barcelona), Matadero (Madrid), Red Studios (São Paulo) & Sassafrass (USA). Rafael has an interest in expanded pedagogies where formal and informal platforms for knowledge exchange are created and disseminated, he created Alto Residency in the jungle of Alto Paraiso (Brazil), was co-founder of Art Lab Romita 26 (Mexico City) and is part of the Gazua Project (Rio de Janeiro). He has been a visiting lecturer at University of Rochester (UK), Nottingham Trent University (UK) and is currently an associate lecturer at London College of Fashion (UK).
Perez Evans digests, expels and conjures stories, turning the figure of the ethnographer upside down where the object of study is never an other but always oneself. Aware of the complex colonial histories of his own Spanish and Welsh background, he produces sculptures and installations that disorientate, make dirty and fuzzy some of the metropolitan spells and predictions laid out in a neoliberal design. Moving in between contemporary and historical trade, he is looking at the periphery and the rural as constructed sites of shame, where complexities within the marginalised are explored though an insisting on being with difference rather than seeking to equalise it, working against a veneer of easy conviviality by recognising inevitable conflict, violence and discomfort. At times, he plays with audience participation whilst using food-like historical ingredients of trade: sugar, rum, root vegetables which are charged and create a moment of encounter between the viewer and the historical tableaux he re-articulates. Other times working through his personal bestiary, certain animals and their stories are reintroduced into the exhibition space live or through rumor, creating a new digestion around the leftovers of progress, and with it making audible a voice that was otherwise silenced.
Perez Evans is driven to conjure obstacles that push us to revise the forceful script of modernity, collating fragile objects, gestures and stories that also aim to barricade and protect an alterity.