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Cristina Escobar, winner of the DDESSIN PARIS Prize 2024

The 12th edition of the DDESSINPARIS Contemporary Drawing Fair has taken place, chaired by Louma Salomé, Director of the Boghossian Foundation – Villa Empain in Brussels. Hosted in a convivial environment and atmosphere at Domus-Maubourg, this fair, which bears witness to a vibrant heritage, aims to give the general public the opportunity to discover the many different forms of drawing by featuring a mixture of established galleries and artists and upcoming talents. Franco-Cuban artist Cristina Escobar was named winner of the DDESSINPARIS Prize 2024. This prize offers her the opportunity to go and work in a month-long creative residency at the Villa Saint-Louis Ndar in Senegal in 2025.

Entre lineas y sin palabras, a project presented by Galerie Olivier Waltman, is Cristina Escobar’s first solo exhibition. It consists of a set of works aimed at challenging memories.

The exhibition is designed around an imposing installation entitled L’ombre des choses, (The Shadow of Things), which consists of various painted “sculpture-objects” collected when she first arrived in France in the 2000s. Gravitating around this installation are several series highlighting the despair of peoples affected by this tragedy, such as:

Sous les hautes étoiles

In this series of graphite drawings on 30 x 40 cm sheets, Cristina Escobar plays with numbers so that the viewer can see precisely the cardinal points on the globe that take them to a given place.

Cristina Escobar artwork

Le Village Nègre

Le Village Nègre consists of a set of terracotta tiles moulded on the thighs of women living in Thaon-les-Vosges and bearing phrases collected by Cristina Escobar. This work expresses the social and working class conditions of areas deserted by modernity.

Cristina Escobar, winner of the DDESSIN PARIS Prize 2024

Nouvel Atlas de la Méditerranée

This set of blue marbles pinned around L’ombre des choses reflects the Mediterranean as the theatre of the hopes and tragedies of exile. Cristina Escobar isolates objects from their primary context to redraw the territories of our globe through which we can perceive the issues of migration.

Cristina Escobar artwork


This series of 24 graphite drawings on tracing paper represents the utopia of thousands of people seeking a better life crossing the continents of the globe. Cristina Escobar draws here on news images and chooses to show us drifting boats, symbols of despair.

Cristina Escobar artwork

Fétiches or Portraits d’indigènes

Here, Cristina Escobar has worked from photographed items to create a new series of drawings on 120 x 80 cm sheets of ARCHES® Aquarelle paper. This representation of an inventory of industrial and/or craft objects from the town of Thaon-les-Vosges and other places in Lorraine is enriched by the story of the working class. Here, she is trying to illustrate the history of industry and the working class in the region. In addition, she has also used personal objects, mixing them with the objects collected to create a bridge and bind her own memory to that of her host territory. Fétiche is a real tribute to the workers who were obliged to work in the factories of Lorraine.

Cristina Escobar artwork

Fétiches, drawing on ARCHES® Aquarelle 356 gsm natural white hot pressed paper 120×80 cm – © Cristina Escobar

Cristina Escobar in a few lines

Born in 1977 in Santiago de Cuba, Cristina Escobar is a graduate of Academy of Plastic Arts of Santiago de Cuba and the Beaux-Arts de Nancy. A socially engaged artist who values her freedom of expression, she creates projects that challenge people’s memories on social and political issues.

Her work aims to highlight movement, time and travel, whilst at the same questioning the roots of exile. Every object is carefully designed to represent a recent or less recent migration. Through her works, Cristina Escobar pays tribute to migrants’ stories that she has gathered over the last decade. She is eager to pass on a personal story and challenge our collective consciousness in order to raise awareness of this injustice. Thanks to her abstract, but formal approach, she offers us delicate, intimate accounts. Her pared down style gives rise to works that stand out in contrast to an exuberant model. Her attention to detail leads her to hide the horrific reality of the subjects she deals with by creating a form of perfection in her art. When observing her pictures, the purity of the lines stands out and the importance of the object in the space within her work takes on its full meaning. The drawings of the winner of the 2024 prize are all carefully thought out.

Cristina Escobar is represented on the site of the prestigious Galerie Olivier Waltman:

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