Mandy Cano Villalobos

Making a Way

Making A Way | Translation
Artists: Linda Bond, Kathy Bruce, Dee Hood, Saskia Krafft, Nathan Margoni, Lake Roberson Newton, TJ Norris, Iviva Olenick, Mandy Cano Villalobos

Mandy Cano Villalobos: On her work
Mandy Cano Vilalobos: How Coronavirus has affected her practice

A disjunctured experience of time undergirds all of my projects. When I was 1 year old my mother divorced my father, joined the army and took me with her. Childhood was a succession of army bases and new schools. I sought locational and generational belonging in old photos and family stories. Such second-hand memories became a surrogate home.

My work addresses how we experience time, our understanding of chronological progression, collective and personal memory, and the atemporal nature of ritual. My materials reference an amalgam of stories, song lyrics, Western literature, art history, ancient religions, and cultural collisions. Projects are materializations of time, a record of my life. Studio production is an external reflection of my want for home. The more I labor within the studio, the more I make a place for myself within this world, and reconcile life’s brevity with a sense of belonging.

Process is significant. Repetitive and ritualistic, my processes engage each passing moment to explore the meditative potential of labor. Sanities and Solitudes, for example, is a series of monotonous performances enacted in isolation throughout the Covid19 quarantine. I doggedly execute futile tasks (e.g. moving ripping pages from a book) to affirm my presence and purpose in the absence of others. 

In a world of social media bombardment, consumerist exchange, and alienation, I seek a quiet resistance. My practice centers upon touch, care and labor intensive processes to negate society’s superficial norm. I reclaim the slow, imperfect nature of our humanity and return to the corporeal.

Mandy Cano Villalobos is an interdisciplinary artist whose practice centers upon concepts of time. Her projects span installation, painting, performance, sculpture and video. Cano Villalobos has exhibited in venues including drj (Berlin, Germany), Site: Brooklyn (Brooklyn, NY), the Ruth and Elmer Wellin Museum (Clinton, NY), Maryland Institute College of Art (Baltimore, MD), the Ukranian Institute of Modern Art, (Chicago), The Museum of New Art (Detroit, MI), Hillyer Art Space (Washington, DC), Gray Contemporary (Houston, TX) and La Casa Pauly (Puerto Montt, Chile). Cano Villalobos has been an artist in residence at Vermont Studio Center, Art Omi, Post Contemporary, VCCA, Wassaic Project, Ragdale, and ACRE. She has also received grants from multiple organizations including the Puffin and Frey Foundations. Her work has been reviewed in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Sculpture Magazine, Hyperallergic, Culturehall, Performa Magazine and Bad-at-Sports, among others. Cano Villalobos received her MFA from The George Washington University in Washington, DC and currently resides in Grand Rapids, MI. She is represented by Lafontsee Gallery in Michigan, and is a project artist with drj art projects in Berlin.
Instagram: @mandy_cano_villalobos
Lafontsee Galleries (USA):
drj art projects (Germany):