Juanita Meneses

Region: South

Website: http://www.juanameneses.com

City / State: Miami, FL

My work uses as a starting point desert landscapes and conflicted spaces in which narratives involving violence, dysfunctional landscapes and communities commingle. There is an underlying violence: people are being chased down, something or someone is being smuggled, cars are crashing. The characters could be civilians, drug dealers, border patrols, border crossers, soldiers, or minutemen, but they are missing, leaving their cars and other objects to speak for them.

I am inspired by fiction writers such as Salman Rushdie, Haruki Murakami, Jose Saramago, and Italo Calvino that create imagined worlds interlaced with contemporary and social concerns. Added to these narratives are various websites that track ever changing phenomena that impact our social space: the American Border Patrol, vigilante groups, storm watchers, soldiers' blogs, monster trucks, and the nightly news.

I blend these sources and familiar objects with open-ended narratives to give the viewer a starting point to develop a unique sequence of events and explore biases. What might look like an illegal episode to some might be a friendly encounter to others.