Paloma Tendero is a Spanish photographer now living in London. After completing a BA (Hons) in Fine Arts at University Complutense, Madrid, she went to on to graduate from the MA Photography at the London College of Communication.
Your work blends photography with sculpture — how did this way of working come about for you? How would you describe your work?
I come from a Fine Arts background, and as an artist, I have worked with many mediums. However, my artwork is not based on any specific technique, but in materials that can provide me with an outcome I wish to express.
My work often begins with photographs of my body, contorted through performance into a sculptural form and combined with sculpture and other mixed media like knitting and embroidery. I look for a representation of the internal genetic flaw. I am interested in the analysis of the internal body, exploring beyond the physical structure of the human being. Through photography and sculpture I look for an interpretation of this co-existence of the healthy and the sick.
In Inside Out the photographs explore the relationship between psychological difficulties and their physical manifestation. Can you explain how this work was conceived?
Inside Out started with the exploration of somatisation; how psychological conflicts are sublimated into organic symptoms that are manifested physically. This idea then evolved with my interest in the influence of genetic disorders that are passed along family lines.
My work explores physical and psychological relationships that spring from this inherited determinism. In the Inside Out series, I look at the influence of genetic disease, passed along family lines, which renders the body vulnerable to an unrequested destiny.
What does the importance of placing yourself in the frame hold in your work?
I experience life through my body, a body that holds my emotions and houses my anatomy, my energy and memories. My body has been compromised by its own genetic history and the genetic flaw I have inherited from my mother.
By using my own body as both model and sculpture and placing objects upon it, I am creating images from performance. I am able to investigate the struggle between biological determinism and self-will.
What are you working on now?
My next project is call Célula. By focusing on genetics and organic processes that are linked to us, my artwork weaves in issues arising out of the emotional struggle between good and bad, body and mind, inside and outside, dualities that are the union between two divided worlds.
I am seeking to explore these ideas through the artistic side of science, looking at microscopic views of blood cells and body scans that are able to look beyond our physical characteristics.