Keysha Rivera is a textile and media artist of Afro-Indigenous ancestry. Rivera combines traditional craft and contemporary digital technologies. Her work revolves around cultural preservation and the configuration of displaced histories.

Her work being rooted in the connection of material and process, she creates soft sculptures, paintings, and installations that point to the conversation around the vulnerability of home, Caribbean identity and the tenderness of memory and remembrance. 

Her familial research acts as a guide for the creation of works. By centering Puerto Rican liberation, her art functions as a contemporary form of resistance to the present-day realities. 


Artist Statement:

My recent creative process has shifted towards building soft sculptures using photos. This process emerged as a reaction to the restrictions of initially painting on canvas, making illustrations, and using traditional ways of archiving memory. Rather than working within a defined area and material, I like exploring different mediums, materials, shapes, and sizes. Exploring fabric altering by shifting from 2D to 3D or fabric layering has been instrumental in finding myself in my work.

The freedom afforded by this process has impacted the way I use the material to form stories through sculpture and creation. In other words, in a way, I like to corrupt the original form and make something else. The new form then maintains a sense of mysterious familiarity.

My piece, "The organ responsible for all the other organs." I worked with technology to print a film photo from the 1980s to the fabric. This fabric is then manipulated by creating rips in the fabric. The fabric is then filled with recycled polyfill and sewn. The rips are meant to create ventricule-like shapes using fabric. The shape is representative of the legacy of family and the act of bodily and spiritual inheritance.