A Tale of Two Cities

Emma Hill


...Other artists have used records held in libraries and museums, or have retold the stories of their own family histories, translating narratives into poignant sculptural objects. Soraya Marcano's tiny paper boats in Exile... are examples of the many 'books' that tell of memory and the specificity of place, without words, but in forms that are full of poetic potential.

(Art Review, January 2002, Vol. LII)




El Ritmo Latino Del Mundo at Flushing Town Hall
Nick Stillman


...Soraya Marcano also addresses the theme of voyeurism, albeit in a more brooding manner. Certain themes persist – a white dress, an empty hanger – and the works are drenched in a poignant sadness and alienation. Her three strongest pieces are a series of tiny, framed mixed-media pieces entitled "Nudes." Stylistically similar to Raushenberg’s collages, all include a photo of a nude woman with her back turned to the viewer. The series is visceral, discomfiting and guilt-inducing – you want to look for the right reasons but it’s difficult to tear your eyes away from the woman’s bare ass...

(The Queen Scene, December 2001)




Desnudo Vestido
Desnudo Vestido

El Ritmo Latino del Mundo

The Latin Way of the World

Marysol Nieves


...Soraya Marcano creates mixed- media works that reveal the alienation of the individual in contemporary culture through fragmentd or disembodied references to the body.


(Flushing Town Hall, 2001)







Aesthetic of Diversity

Heng- Gil Han


Soraya Marcano's combined- media installation explores what might be called a female sensibility. The installation addresses various issues seen from a woman's perspective, it unfolds autobiographical narratives, raises questions about political issues, and expresses violence and pain. By using paper, thread, and fabric, Marcano creates small objects and figures, such as paper boats and human heads. These obbjects look fragile and they signal an accumulation of tragic feelings and experiences. The artist creates a number of such objects in various sizes and colors.  She then puts them together in an arragement to complete a visual metaphore that speaks about the life of a woman seen from the perspective of a woman. 


(20 Yrs. of Workspace, JCAL, 2001)




JCAL hosts 1999 artist-in-residence exhibition

Kate Bobby


"I love it here in New York. I wasn't planning to stay. It just sort of happened that way," says Marcano who since 1991 has called the Big Apple her home base if not exactly her home, because she still lives the rather itinerant existence of an artist on the rise.


In her upcoming show, Marcano explores the issues of her heritage, identity and the nature of memory as viewed through the filter of her various acquired identities: as that of an artist; as that of a Puerto Rican living in New York; as that of a single, independent woman.


One way she explores the changing perspectives on the past is through the construction of "memory boxes." Fashioning these containers from everyday materials, Marcano stitches or binds the boxes together by hand, hastening their aging process with layered, staining applications. Upon opening them, one comes across a passel of created "memories" infused with meaning through the repetition of words in her native Spanish, various photos, and "icons" - cutouts of archetypal imagery representing universal images of the collective life cycle of birth to death.


(Times Ledger 1999)





100 en la sien: 10 artistas ante el 98

Margarita Fernández Zavala


Los trabajos de Soraya Marcano son instalaciones de pequeño formato que apelan a la lectura intima, a reflexionar sobre lo aprendido, lo escamoteado y lo recuperado. Imágenes es una serie de cinco imágenes serigráficas enmarcadas de Albizu, una virgen negra, su autorretrato, el Ché y San Sebastián El cristal del marco de cada una tiene inscripciones que sugieren sus respectivas interpretaciones. A la imágen de Albizu la acompaña su exhortación a los jóvenes de que no abandonen la escuela y de que estudien, como la clave de la concienciación. El tema religioso se presenta con dos imágenes; la dela Virgen negra cuya inscripción sugiere la recuperación de modelos femeninos y negros escamoteados por la historia oficial, y la de San Sebastián cuya inscripción se refiere a la historia como mitos que se reinventan. Ambas imágenes religiosas tienen una lectura positiva pues nos facultan y nos dan poder...


(Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Puerto Rico 1998)




On the Intaglio at Work of Art

Sum Li


Soraya Marcano traces her love of nature back to her roots. The mountainn town of Cidra where she was born is nestle in the center of Puerto Rico. Surrounded by lush tropical vegetation and unspoil terrain she developed  her appreciation for nature's magnificence and, moreover, respect for the fragility of life.


Now living in Brooklyn, she has not lost touch with that essence. She says it is in fact a moving force in her art. 


"I have felt an inclination for art, ever since I can remember- theatre, music, the visual arts," she says. But through the visual arts she has found her strongest means of expression. Her work, which is primarly figurative, comes out of feellings of relatedness- to the human condition, to nature, to herself on an emotinal and intutive level.


(The Bridge- Leader 1997)