BY MALIHA MOHSIN | December 23, 2014

Photo: Cristina Nuñez

This Chobi Mela, Cristina Nuñez, Spanish artist-photographer-researcher, brings her exemplary work and philosophy to Bangladesh.

Internationally acclaimed and extensively researched upon in various academic spheres, Nuñez's work has largely explored the 'Self'. She had initially taught herself to use photography in communicating her most overwhelming, violent, repressed and intimate emotions whilst trying to cope with a troubled adolescence. Over the years, her self-therapeutic take on photography has evolved into a method that has been taught, replicated and heavily researched all over the world- The Self-Portrait Experience®.

The Self-Portrait Experience® has been shared with a diverse range of people all over the world- people rooting from extreme and diverging regions, backgrounds and cultures- with a common goal of truly identifying oneself, building one's own self-esteem and transforming one's inner turmoil into art. Nuñez has believed in art's power to reconcile with issues and conflicts, and has built a great body of philosophy revolving around the art of self-portraiture with this belief. She has taken The Self Portrait Experience® to university students in Oslo just as she has taken it to prisoners in Barcelona- displaying human lives in their most vulnerable states so that they may accept their vulnerabilities and be empowered by them instead of repressing and shunning them. And across differences of culture, color, language and personal histories, she has been able to build an exercise that trumps all those differences and focuses only on the emotional conflicts that bare us.

On Nuñez's philosophy of work, curator Carolina Lio says, "Cristina Nuñez, indeed, has always worked on the pain making it the protagonist of her life and of her art, which in no case sees as disjointed parts. Art is her own therapy, a therapy that does not aim to defeat pain, but to keep it, discovering its beauty." *

Nuñez's experimentation and research on self-portraiture has given birth to a number of umbrella projects, such as 'HER/STORY Women Behind The Camera', 'Higher Self', 'Uncool', 'Someone To Love', all of which have used her philosophy in examining issues relevant to femininity, substance abuse, rehabilitation etc.

Chobi Mela VIII will bring an exhibition by Nuñez and The Self-Portrait Experience® itself to Bangladesh, exposing the Bangladeshi populace to a whole new dimension of self-portraiture.

Photo: Cristina Nuñez

But Beautiful, an exhibition by Cristina Nuñez

But Beautiful brings together for the first time the self-portraits taken by Christina Nuñez, enabling her to develop over 25 years her method The Self-Portrait Experience®.

But Beautiful (1988-2014) consists of many portraits of the author, combined with images of her ancestors and portraits of her family, the work investigates the relationships with them and among them, and shows a constant pursuit of her own roots and identity through faces and bodies.

The Self-Portrait Experience®, a workshop by Cristina Nuñez

This three day long workshop expands on her philosophy of using self-portraiture as self-therapy in three parts: Me, Me and the Other, Me and the World. The method aims to stimulate the creative process through a series of exercises and the use of specific artistic criteria for the intuitive perception and choice of the works. During this workshop, there will be individual self-portrait sessions, group work on the assignments and the final work for a projection. Participants are also recommended to watch Nuñez's videos, SOMEONE TO LOVE and HIGHER SELF to better understand THE SELF-PORTRAIT EXPERIENCE®.