Performance Artist – Teresa Burga

Teresa Burga

Peruvian Artist- Conceptual Art, Installation art, media art, technology-based art

Burga is considered a major figure for her boundary-pushing works focused on authorship, forms of labor, and the status of women in Peru, her home country. Her work has taken the form of sculptures, installations, drawings, paintings, and conceptual projects, in the process expanding what art could be.

Burga’s best-known work is one that during its day generated confusion. Perfil de la mujer Peruana (Profile of Peruvian Woman), from 1980–81, marked a collaboration with the psychotherapist Marie-France Cathelat, with whom Burga founded the Investigaciones Sociales y Artísticas, an institution through which they facilitated social research. For Burga’s project, she and Cathelat interviewed 290 middle-class women between the ages of 25 and 29 in Lima to obtain statistics on their political leanings, their bodies, and their identities. The presentation of their findings took the form of drawings and diagrams, as well as artworks, including a sculpture composed of quipus, knotted fabrics alluding to an Incan counting system.

A founding member of the Grupo Arte Nuevo, a Peruvian avant-garde movement that lasted from 1966–68, Burga was instrumental in introducing pop art, op art, and happenings to the Peruvian art scene.

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