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Curating Contemporary Art (MA)

Ana Escoto-Esteva

As an Art Historian and Curator born and raised in Mexico City, my approach to my practice has always been rooted in interdisciplinary exploration. With a background as a Latin American curator, I have been drawn towards art's political and social interventions. By merging these two aspects of my expertise, I have come to view art as a powerful tool for fostering interpersonal connections and creating a safe space for discussing both political and personal subject matters.

As they say: I yearn,

I live, I love,

let's invent words,

new lights and games,

new nights

that fold themselves

to new words.

Let us make

other gods

less great,

less distant,

shorter and more primal.

Other sexes

let's do

and other imperious needs

our own,

other dreams

without pain and without death.

As they say: I am born,

I sleep, I laugh,

Let's invent life


- Susana Thénon, Foundation

Black and white picture of me

I am firmly committed to seizing the dialogic potential inherent within the intersection of politics and art. Traditional institutions have sculpted the frameworks within which we perceive and experience art. Within this context, I see my role as a curator deeply rooted in my temporal reality, to reinterpret these spaces and pave the way for a dialogue that has been historically marginalized, such as discourses surrounding mortality, sexuality, and existence.

In doing so, my intention is not to exploit these subjects for their shock value, but rather to facilitate personal engagement in a sensitive, soulful encounter. This pursuit is reinforced through the theoretical grounding of Julia Kristeva's polylogue, which provides a compass for my curatorial practice.

By consciously including a diverse array of voices, particularly those of the audience, my curatorial approach seeks to challenge conventional practices that tend to neglect the experiential. In this context, I consider love as an important factor in fostering inclusivity, a polyphony of voices that advocates for transformation and empathy within spaces traditionally used to extol the artist. Today, these spaces are reimagined as hubs that celebrate individuality and inspire action.

It is my contention that the emotional and cathartic experiences facilitated by art merit our attention. Indeed, all routes towards social change are seeded in aesthetic encounters with our surroundings. From these sensory interactions, the emotional dimension of our humanity is stirred, and a multitude of feelings - from desire and love to anger and lust - give rise to an innate craving for human connection. I maintain that art, in its myriad forms, serves as a conduit for such connections, providing a platform for dialogue and emotional resonance.

Ultimately, my curatorial vision seeks to honour art as a catalyst for evoking individual emotions, fostering meaningful connections, and stimulating the vibrant dialectic that propels society forward. 

People drawing in a park exterior
"Infinitely" WorkshopI was the curator and workshop manager for artist Alice May's workshop. This was a two-part workshop that consisted firstly of observational drawing, and secondly of the creation of a collective mural
"To Be Here With You" promotional poster
Show PosterParticipatory site-specific project that focused on providing a spiritual experience for the audience. Located within the Salter Space and the surrounding park at Southwark Park Gallery
A finished weaving lying on a statue.
Detail of "Greening" WorkshopAn example of the weaving completed during the "Greening" Workshop.
Children and adults weaving outside in the park
"Greening" WorkshopThis workshop was directed to families, the activity consisted of weaving May Poles to welcome Spring, using natural materials such as twigs and herbs that were found in the Gallery's garden.
Collective Mural making, there is a bright sun in the middle
Detail of the "Infinitely" WorkshopThe second part of the workshop seen in action.
A family participating in three-dimensional map making
"Gathering" WorkshopThis workshop focused on integrating the geology of the park into a range of materials that were useful to create a three-dimensional artwork. Participants were encouraged to take their artworks home.




5 weeks long
"One Big Bag" Performance
Case Study "One Big Bag"Every Ocean Hughes, One Big Bag, Installation View, Studio Voltaire, 2022. Courtesy of the artist and Studio Voltaire.
Regina José Galindo street Performance
Case Study "Recognition of a Body"Regina José Galindo, Presence, 2017, performed in Guatemala City, image courtesy of Ameno Córdoba
Installation view
Case Study "Recognition of a Body"Installation view "The Body of Others", used as a Case Study




10,000 words
10 mirrors lining up a wall
Exhbition ViewFrida Escobedo, El Otro, 2018. Displayed in the gallery for the exhibition
An acrylic painting that reads "July 9, 1981" hung up in a wall, a newspaper heading hanging beside it
On Kawara, July 9, 1981Exhibition detail of On Kawara's work which focuses on challenging the idea of linear time and the erasure of history
A picture of an explanade as seen from above
Francis Alÿs, "Sunpath", 1999, Mexico CityExhibition detail of Francis Alÿs' work, "Sunpath"




3 December 2020, 30 January 2021
A black and white photograph of a woman with two floating sheets above her
Untitled, Francesca Woodman, Angel Series
A black and white photograph of a hand peering from a doorframe
Untitled, Francesca Woodman, Angel Series
A woman peering at herself through a mirror, she is crawling
Untitled, Francesca Woodman
Black and White Portrait of Sylvia Plath
Sylvia Plath photographed by Theodore Hughes




6 month preparation process
Intervened Map
Detail from the show
An array of intervened maps
Detail of the Artworks




January 2019, May 2019