Victor Zubeldia

Contact Information:


Artist Statement:


"Imperfection" is human. To negate our imperfections is to deny our very core. We strive to be perfect, to be beautiful, and to free ourselves of flaws; often fooling ourselves into believing that we get closer to attaining perfection by dissociating ourselves from those who represent all we wish not to be.

We define ourselves by the image we project. Our obsession with physical perfection has led us to the gym and the plastic surgeon. We flip the television channels and the magazine pages not to learn about the sick or the needy, but to keep abreast of the beautiful and the healthy. In our glorification of beauty, our society often goes even further, confusing external appearance with depth of character and purity. In this sense, external appearance is a great divider. It has become a filter to separate the worthy from the unworthy, a parameter to distance an admired "us" from an imperfect "them."

The first to be socially excluded in our search for visual perfection are those people with physical or psychological differences or "abnormalities." Disabled or different people are condemned for their imperfections and often equated with those who are physically and morally degenerate, guilty of transgression, or even as the deserving recipients of divine punishment. People with handicaps, addictions, mental illness, are too often blamed for their own condition and cruelly pushed aside by those who validate their own self worth by the distance they create between themselves and the less perfect.

Historically, the occidental visual arts used "imperfect beings," the disabled, disfigured, or deviant members of society almost exclusively to represent insanity, sin, or perversion. Among the most famous representations were those found in the works of the Spanish painters Velázquez and Goya, who portrayed bearded women, dwarfs, witches, and he decrepit elderly as comic figures or morbidly grotesque; these figures represented the vices and decadence of society.

This series, called "Imperfections," seeks to re-represent the socially rejected, not to glorify people who are different, but to remind ourselves that our similarities go beyond our differences. People with unusual physical or mental characteristics are not void of pleasures or pain, courage or fear. Contrary to earlier artistic portrayals, I aim to explore the range of human emotions in "imperfect" subjects, thereby encouraging a connection between the onlookers and the portrayed.

"Siamese twins", 2002, 63" x 47.2"
acrylic and oil on canvas

"County Dump", 2002, 55" x 71"
acrylic and tempera on canvas

"Gozo poderoso (the powerful pleasure)"
2002, 79"x118", oil on wood / (five pieces)

"Untitled", 2003, 39" x 78"
oil on canvas

"Vitiligo", 2004, 50" x 66"
oil and encaustic on canvas (in progress

ApplicationPrevious Recipients | George Sugarman ArtworksAbout the Foundation