Wanda Fraga Sánchez de la Campa (Santa Clara, 1994) has developed her art closely linked to the isolation of her childhood. From a very early age, she found haven in painting, as escape to her interior isolation.
After starting at the Leopoldo Romañach Art Academy in her hometown, she received painting lessons that opened a conceptual diapason extending to postmodernity and the variety of artistic movements in the XX century.
In 2012 she abandoned the Academy a year before graduating. In this period, she presented her first solo exhibition ‘Miniaturas frente al abismo’ (Miniatures in Front of the Abyss), at El Mejunje Gallery, in Santa Clara. The exhibition presented autobiographic brushstrokes in collage techniques, while dialoguing between conceptualism and realism. The influence of Joseph Beuys is evident when she experiments and makes small scenarios with themes such as death, life, the past, the human emotions, and sexuality.
Incited by her teachers, she returns to the Academy to finish the last year and finally graduated. In this period she had a more mature way of thinking, and abandons the interest in representing her individuality and starts to work with the theme of immediate reality from a political viewpoint and from a critical perspective. She began to perceive that in Cuba freedom had limits and censorship was a real fact that could land her in jail.
In 2015 she presents her second solo show titled ‘The Beauty Cynic’, a social critique that juxtaposed images of the revolution’s political propaganda with images of the people in the first years of the ‘special period’ – Patriotism above individuality.. and prostitution, the national flag, migration, guilt, cynicism, all aspects present in each of her pieces. This situation weighed in her decision to travel to Guatemala in 2017 to join again her father. There she began to publish in international art magazines, and her work reached a visibility that transcended the living conditions in Cuba.
Currently, she resides in Guatemala. Her work unfolds adopting a visual poetic that intends to symbolize human relationships, the ethereal, isolation, love, narrating the experiences of a carnal being and his/her vicissitudes as well as limits, taking her work into a world of shadows and memories of people who are no longer around, but remain eternal and immutable.
Although her images have always been intimate, not only in scale but also in the themes she chooses, she is touching upon emotional and philosophical traits of a universal nature. These collages describe her emotional struggles, including feelings of isolation, quests for identity, and the way she relates to others; situations that can be pertinent to any person in today’s reality. Her themes are a compendium of situations as universal and complex as life itself. She touches upon private matters such as couples’ interactions, mother and child connections, with the broad-spectrum background quest of one’s place in the world.