Spike Island are sad to learn of the recent death of artist Ofelia Rodríguez (1946–2023).
Throughout her life, Ofelia developed highly personal and original artwork shaped by her memories of her native Barranquilla, on the Caribbean coast of Colombia. With remarkable dedication, she constructed an imaginary world where myths, legends and popular traditions intertwine with daily life. Beneath the bright colours and tropical motifs that populate the vibrant surfaces of her paintings, sculptures and prints, Ofelia’s dark humour and irony cast a critical eye on the world around her.
‘For me, art is the most intimate expression of the totality that I have lived.’ Ofelia Rodríguez
Ofelia’s upcoming survey show, Talking in Dreams, opens at Spike Island on 29 September 2023. More poignantly than before, it has become an opportunity to celebrate her life.
Ofelia Rodríguez (1946–2023) studied at the Escuela de Bellas Artes, Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá, and later at Yale University, New Haven and the Pratt Graphic Art Center, New York. In 1978–80, she travelled to Paris, where she studied at Atelier 17 and exhibited her first assemblages and ‘magic boxes’. She settled in London in 1984. She has exhibited her work at venues such as The Queens Museum of Art, New York, USA (1988); the 5th Havana Biennale, Cuba (1995); Museo de Arte Moderno ‘La Tertulia’, Cali, Colombia (1995); MAMBO, Museo de Arte Moderno de Bogotá, Colombia (2008); MOLAA, Museum of Latin American Art, Long Beach, California (2011, 2017 and 2021); and Instituto de Visión, Bogotá, Colombia (2017). Her work is held in collections such as ESCALA, Essex Collection of Art from Latin America, The University of Essex and MOLAA, Museum of Latin American Art, Long Beach, California.