"Bestiario", "Contiguous", "A Show of Heads", "Hacia otro mar", "Paseantes", "Variation", "Mito y Enteanatomia"
Project 10/10/10- Artist Commission,Permanent Collection, Mint Museum of Craft and Design, Charlotte , NC
12 April 1976 (age 44) Boston, Massachusetts
Preludios y partidas by cristina c rdova
Cristina Córdova ,is an American-born, Puerto Rican sculptor who works and lives in Penland, North Carolina.
Córdova was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1976. Her parents were Puerto Ricans completing their studies in Medicine at Harvard University. They returned to Puerto Rico when she was 6 months old. She grew up taking in the rich and layered imagery of the Catholic church. The powerful iconography would come to inspire her work and her view of the world.
Córdova graduated from the Academia del Perpetuo Socorro, Miramar, Puerto Rico in 1994 and earned a Bachelor of Arts and a concentration in Fine Arts from the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Campus in 1998. During the summer of 1999 she finished courses at Touchtone School of Crafts at the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University. That same summer she completed courses at the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Deer Isle, Maine. Later, she began studies as a special student in independent studies at the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University. She was supervised by Wayne Higby and Walter McConnell. She earned a scholarship to Alfred University for her Master’s Degree in ceramics in 2000. She earned a Masters of Fine Arts from New York State College of Ceramics.
Córdova was on track to becoming an engineer when she realized that it wasn't for her. She switched to art school, where she could pursue her interest in ceramics. After graduating in 2002 she was selected to serve as a resident artist at Penland School of Crafts. Córdova moved to Penland, North Carolina to participate in the residency in 2002. After completing her residency she and her family made their home and studio on the Penland campus. She works across from the Penland Gallery where she shares a studio with her husband, Pablo Soto, who is a glass artist.
"Córdova doesn’t want to be labeled a Puerto Rican artist – or a woman artist, or any type of artist, other than a compelling one – she does believe authenticity can come only from a deeply personal place." Her Afro-Caribbean heritage and her understanding of contemporary and historical influences have impacted her art form. Her knowledge of early Roman life and African sculptures are also reflected in her figures. Among the artists which have impacted her work are Doug Jeck, Judy Fox, Jaime Suarez and Susana Espinosa. She comments about her own work that "we are all taking from a collective creativity."
The human figure is key to her work which has been described as "a compelling strain of magical realism ... laden with ideas of creation, crucifixion and difficult nature of existence." She works primarily with clay but has an interest in working with other mediums. Her moldings recreate various human forms, often female. She has also recreated animal-like creatures. At the abstract level, her figures, represent the struggles in the world of today. Cordóva weaves the past with the present as she creates a place for the viewer to complete the narrative in her work.
Recognition and awards
Cristina Córdova and Pablo Soto have two daughters. They live in the Blue Ridge Mountains in Penland, North Carolina. She travels often to Puerto Rico and exhibits and teaches internationally.