Raised in Colombia during a violent civil war, and raising his own son in bucolic Cornwall, England, Carlos Zapata creates intimate and emotive sculpture, which, while belonging to the tradition of Folk and Tribal Arts, has evolved from personal experience. His Automata are deceptively simple, elegant machines, infused with joy and playfulness, and their lightheartedness allows us to confront honestly the dark side of their subjects. In Diamonds Are Forever, on the upper story of a human-headed ‘house’, a woman receives a diamond from her suitor; meanwhile, down at the base, the exploited laborer chips relentlessly at a stone. Among Zapata’s still series, Child Soldiers holds his memories of war and its terrible exploitation of children, and Iconos : Sagrado Y Profano explores the graft behind the religious icons of his youth.
Recipient of The Threadneedle Art Prize, Carlos’ work is held in public and private collections around the world, a small sampling of which include London’s Natural History Museum, The Exploratorium Museum in San Francisco, The Franklin Institute Science Museum in Philadelphia, The Arima Museum and The Gumma Museum in Japan, and the Museo Parque De Las Ciencias in Granada, Spain.