On view January 2 through May 9, 2021, María Berrío: Esperando mientras la noche florece (Waiting for the Night to Bloom) marks the artist’s first solo museum survey, and the eighth exhibition of the Museum’s celebrated Recognition of Art by Women (RAW) series. Esperando mientra la noche florece features the Brooklyn-based, Colombian-born artist’s large-scale collages, in which she reflects on issues of immigration and nature’s vulnerability through interior, domestic scenes and fantastical settings. The Norton’s presentation includes nearly 20 pieces created from 2013 to today, including works on public display for the first time.
Berrío intricately layers Japanese papers to construct scenes populated by women in lush landscapes and modest interiors. Her work explores contemporary themes of displacement through a visual vocabulary that employs both lifelike depictions and magical realism. The evolution of her work from fantastic to realistic environments focuses on the theme of survival and other universal struggles, with images of women and the natural world to offer hope as she reflects on the effects of this extraordinary time in our existence. Inspired by her own family’s history leaving her native Bogotá, Colombia, Berrío promotes the resilience of women – as mothers, daughters, sisters, and friends – whose strength and compassion is the only means for families to endure separation and an uncertain future, urging viewers to find connection across cultures and experiences.
Organized by Cheryl Brutvan, who has curated the RAW series since its inception in 2011, the exhibition follows solo presentations of work by Jenny Saville (2011), Sylvia Plimack Mangold (2012), Phyllida Barlow (2013), Klara Kristalova (2014), Njideka Akunyili Crosby (2016), Svenja Deininger (2017), and Nina Chanel Abney (2018). RAW celebrates the work of emerging and mid-career women artists and is made possible through the Leonard and Sophie Davis Fund/MLDauray Arts Initiative.