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Marilyn Montufar

Transcending Identity:
Impressions of People, Community, and Landscapes

Transcending Identity is a provocative collection of photographs and stories from the road, documenting a journey within two cultures and two countries.

Marilyn Montufar. Vanessa and Jessica, Pasadena, CA, 2009. Color photograph. 16 x 16 inches.
  • February 1 - 22, 2018
  • Opening: Thursday, February 1

Artist Talk: Thursday, February 15, 12:30 pm

Marilyn Montufar’s experience as a Mexican-American is one of straddling two cultures without fully belonging to either. Constructs of identity—both people and place—are integral aspects of her recent body of work.

She has travelled extensively, documenting the topography of contemporary life on both sides of the border, with a particular focus on marginalized communities. Her subjects are friends, family members, and peers as well as strangers who have crossed her path.

Montufar says, “I believe that the artist’s role is to raise questions about society. In 2017, as a reaction to the political climate in the U.S. and as an extension of the series I was already building, I began photographing communities throughout Mexico. The experience opened a window to my own heritage and has allowed me to share a different reality than what is portrayed in mainstream media.”

Through extended engagement and the establishment of mutual trust, Transcending Identity has created pathways for conversation, compassion, and understanding. Montufar’s resulting compositions, intimate portraits and landscapes, reflect the personal and collective narratives of the U.S. and Mexico today.

About the Artist

Marilyn Montufar uses photography to advocate for and inspire social change. She was born in Los Angeles, California, and received her BFA in Photography from the School of Visual Arts in New York. Her practice has also benefitted from workshops in Mexico and Italy.

Inspired by the diverse lifestyles that surface in major metropolitan areas, Montufar is primarily interested in documenting the transitions inherent in human relationships through the practice of portraiture and in exploring the ever-evolving urban and natural landscape. She currently resides in Seattle, Washington, and is a Mexican-American dual citizen.