MARTA MARIA PEREZ BRAVO
Marta María Pérez Bravo (born 1959) is a Cuban artist who is best known for her dream-based black-and-white photography, often using her own body as the central subject to express her own mythological beliefs.
Bravo graduated in Painting at the San Alejandro Academy of Fine Arts (1979) and the Instituto Superior de Arte (1984). Although she studied painting while at the Instituto Superior de Arte, she did a photography project for her thesis and has been doing photography ever since. She lived in Havana until 1995 when she moved to Monterrey, Mexico, with her family where she currently resides.
Bravo's work is usually staged, small-format black-and-white photographs where she uses her body as a vessel to express her cultural and religious perspective. She is deeply connected to her cultural background especially the religious belief of the Afro-Caribbean Santería. The Santería believe that the divine exists in all things, even in everyday objects. These objects are often "votive offerings and other elements of popular lore"  of her Cuban culture. This is why Bravo chooses such familiar objects such as rope, branches, and animal parts to express the divine nature of all things. Her photographs attempt to express her own spiritual path, documenting her progress through abstract and dream-like staged photographs. Although her spiritual path itself remains vague, we are given a glimpse into her divine experiences.
A large part of her work also consists of self-portraits that are intended to "demystify" motherhood. Her challenges in childbirth served as the inspiration for her series called "To Conceive" and "Memories of Our Baby." These series attempt to demystify motherhood by showing her body in ways that are intended to challenge the worshiping of sensual beauty. One method she uses to accomplish this is to depict her body in circumstances of physical violence
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