Gisela Insuaste

Born: New York, New York
Lives: Brooklyn, New York

My work explores the intersection of architecture, topography and memory through paintings, drawings, sculptures and installations. I tap into the subtle and quirky topologies of urban spaces that are composed of interdependent elements that resonate with personal narratives. I seek to understand the interconnectedness of people, places and things and create new spaces that reflect our fragile and dynamic relationship between the built and natural environment, both real and imagined. Through these works, I'm interested in mapping the landscape that includes its physical, emotional and politically charged places that question our individual and shared cultural space and identity. Whether it's a bike ride along a river or a plane ride across an ocean, such personal travels continue to inform my practice where a shift in location, emotion, and activity, give rise to new ways of looking and interpreting.

Gisela Insuaste is a visual artist and educator who received an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and a BA in Anthropology & Studio Art from Dartmouth College. Her paintings, sculptures and site-specific installations are based on real and imagined places that explore the intersection of architecture, topography, and memory and tap into the quirky topologies of urban spaces that resonate with personal narratives. She has participated in various exhibitions and projects nationwide such as the John and June Allcott Gallery, UNC, Chapel Hill, NC; Vox Populi, Philadelphia, PA; Satellite Gallery at the University of Texas, San Antonio, TX; Aljira-the Center for Contemporary Art, Newark, NJ; Aicon Gallery, NY; Cuchifritos Gallery, NY; ABC No Rio, NY; Queens Museum of Art, Queens, NY; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (MCA), IL; Chicago Cultural Center, Chicago, IL; Krannert Art Museum-UIUC, Champaign, IL; and Gallery 400-UIC; Bucket Rider Gallery, Thomas McCormick Gallery, Chicago, IL. Gisela is a recipient of several grants and awards, including The EFA NYC Artist Workers Residency, Smithsonian LMSP Fellowship, Aljira Emerge10 Fellowship, The Richard Driehaus/Artadia Emerging Artist Award (Chicago), Illinois Arts Council Artist Grants, and MacDowell Colony Artist Fellowships. In 2008 she was included in the international art book, The Upset: Young Contemporary Art by Die Gestalten Verlag, a resource of artists working with visual subcultures. Recent projects include El Museo del Barrio's Bienal- S-Files @ Lehman College, NY; The Carriage House, Islip, NY; 2nd Floor Gallery, Chicago; Trinity Church Museum, NY; Praxis Art Gallery, Miami/NY. Insuaste works as the Nature and Arts Program Manager at Wave Hill, a cultural center and public garden in the Bronx. She is responsible for the conceptualization and implementation of public programs with an emphasis on environmentally- based art, wellness, and nature studies. She currently lives in Brooklyn, NY.


  • MFA, Painting & Drawing
    School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois
  • BA, Anthropology & Studio Art
    Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire

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