Regina José Galindo
In her performance career spanning more than ten years, Regina José Galindo (*1974, Guatemala) refers to a wide range of violent experiences by inflicting violence on her own body. She sees her work as a personal catharsis that is closely connected to the violence in her country and also as pointing to the fight against political crimes, social hierarchies, segregation and the oppression of women. The viewer’s empathy for the artist’s suffering physical pain is also turned into an awareness of the protest’s political subtext. Works in which her own body comes into contact with her own or someone else’s blood ("The Weight of Blood", 2004, "Ablucion", 2007) particularly remind us of performative works by the Cuban artist Ana Mendieta from the 1970s. Her first performances took place in Guatemala in 1999. "Who Can Erase the Traces" (2003) is a statement against the candidacy of the former dictator José Efraín Ríos Montt. In this performance she dipped her feet in blood and walked to the National Palace.
The artist sits in a bare room, carving the word ‘perra’ (slut) with a knife into her thigh. With this performance, Galindo expresses her protest against the ongoing violence against women in her country.
Courtesy Regina José Galindo