Voluspa Jarpa

Rancagua, Chile 1971


Voluspa Jarpa is a Chilean artist who’s e installations, painting and sculptures have focused on political events in Chilean history. Her projects are usually based on a long process of prior investigation.

Over the last 13 years Jarpa’s interest has centered on the use of archives as material for her works, specifically declassified CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) archives which she approaches from the perspective of national history, including events that have been concealed from the country since the time of the military dictatorship. She also represents the archives pictorially, as whole sections of these files have been struck out (redacted), leaving black patches of different sizes and shapes which prevent the document from being read.

In the 21st Century archives have come to play an important part in the acquisition policies of museums and private collections, and they also feature in the practices of many contemporary artists. I thought it would be interesting to find out how Jarpa approaches them in her work.

Alexia Tala

Voluspa Jarpa, born in 1971 in Rancagua, Chile, currently lives and works in Santiago, Chile.

Her work is inspired from a study of memory based on political, historical and social documents of Chile and other Latin American countries; in order to explore many facets of the cultural notion of trauma. Her work might be seen as a subtle and covert examination of history.
She has participated in many international exhibitions including: La No-Historia, 8th Biennial of Mercosur in Porto Alegre, Brazil, La Biblioteca de la No-Historia at the 12th Biennial of Istanbul, Dislocacion at the Kunst Museum of Bern, Project N11 shown during the last edition of Shanghai Biennial.
She received the Illy Sustainable Art Prize in 2012 at ARCO Madrid, with Isabel Aninat Gallery.