Allora & Calzadilla

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Allora & Calzadilla
Allora & Calzadilla, "Stop Repair, Prepare", 2008
Born Jennifer Allora (1974-03-20) March 20, 1974 (age 40) Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Guillermo Calzadilla (1971-01-10) January 10, 1971 (age 43) Havana, Cuba
Education Jennifer Allora: University of Richmond, Virginia, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Guillermo Calzadilla: Escuela de Artes Plasticas, San Juan and Bard College
Known for performance, sculpture, video and sound

Jennifer Allora (born 20 March 1974) and Guillermo Calzadilla (born 10 January 1971) are a collaborative duo of visual artists who live and work in San Juan, Puerto Rico. They represented the USA in the 2011 Venice Biennale.

Early life and education[edit]

Jennifer Allora was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; she received a BA from the University of Richmond in Virginia (1996), a Master of Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2003 and was a fellow at the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program.[1]

Guillermo Calzadilla was born in Havana, Cuba; he received a BFA from Escuela de Artes Plásticas, San Juan, Puerto Rico (1996) and an MFA from Bard College in 2001.[1]


Allora & Calzadilla met while studying abroad in Florence, Italy. They have worked together since 1995.

Allora & Calzadilla have collaboratively produced an expansive interdisciplinary body of work including sculpture, photography, performance, sound and video. Their artistic practice engages with history and contemporary geo-political realities, destabilizing and re-ordering them in ways that can be alternately humorous, poetic, and revelatory.


Allora & Calzadilla's work has been featured in solo exhibitions internationally, including Haus der Kunst, Munich (2008),[2] Serpentine Gallery and Whitechapel Art Gallery, London (2007),[3] Les Rencontres d'Arles festival, France (2008), Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam (2008),[4] Kunsthalle Zurich (2007),[5] National Museum of Art, Oslo (2009) [6] and the Renaissance Society, Chicago (2007).[7] Allora & Calzadilla also participated in the 5th and 7th Gwangju Biennale (2004 and 2008).

2011 Venice Biennale[edit]

On September 8, 2010, the United States Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) announced the selection of Allora & Calzadilla as the American representative to the 2011 Venice Biennale,[8] marking the first time for artists living in Puerto Rico represent the U.S. The Indianapolis Museum of Art will present their work, which will consist of 6 new commissions. In The Brooklyn Rail, writer David St.-Lascaux describes the pavilion installation Gloria: "First, there’s the tank, lying upside down in the gravel. Then there’s the architrave: STATI UNITI D’AMERICA, in Trajan column capitals. And then there’s the 7’6” copy of the U.S. Capitol’s crowning Statue of Freedom, in blackened bronze, lying inside the 'Solaris 442 sun bed.'"[9]


Their works are held in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, Tate Modern, and Centre Georges Pompidou, among others.


Allora & Calzadilla were finalists for the Hugo Boss Prize in 2005. The artists have also been shortlisted for London's 2011 Fourth Plinth commission. Fourth Plinth

In 2008 Allora & Calzadilla were featured in the PBS series Art:21.[10]

Other Awards & Grants[edit]


  • Yates McKee, “Allora & Calzadilla. The monstrous dimension of art,” Flash Art, Milan, no. 240, January–February 2005.
  • J.J. Charlesworth, “Allora & Calzadilla: Power Plays,” Art Review, London, Issue 15, October 2007.
  • Tom McDonough, “Use What Sinks: Allora & Calzadilla,” Art in America, New York City, no. 1, January 2008.
  • Yates McKee, "Wake, Vestige, Survival: Sustainability and the Politics of the Trace in Allora and Calzadilla’s Land Mark," October #133, MIT Press, summer 2010.

Reviews and criticism[edit]

The Year in Art: Times are Tough? Bring on Vermeer and the Pianos by Holland Cotter, The New York Times, December 20, 2009 [17]

Art in Review: Allora & Calzadilla by Holland Cotter, The New York Times, January 30, 2009[18]

Allora & Calzadilla by Ingrid Chu, Frieze Online Blog, February 23, 2009 [19]

Trumpets and Turtles by Sally O’Reilly, Frieze, Issue 108, June-August 2007[20]

Sound Tracks: Hannah Feldman on the Art of Jennifer Allora & Guillermo Calzadilla by Hannah Feldman, Artforum, May 2007[21]


External links[edit]