Arca (musician)

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Arca DJ Set at Home Sweet Home (cropped).jpg
Arca DJing in New York City
Background information
Born (1989-10-14) 14 October 1989 (age 29)
Caracas, Venezuela
  • Record producer
  • DJ
  • songwriter
  • singer
  • performance artist
  • mixing engineer
Years active2011–present
Associated acts

Alejandra Ghersi[5] (born 14 October 1989), better known by the stage name Arca, is a Venezuelan record producer, songwriter, singer, mixing engineer, performance artist and DJ based in London.[6][7][8] Arca has released three studio albums to critical praise and has produced for artists such as Björk, Kanye West, FKA twigs, Kelela and Frank Ocean.

Early life[edit]

Arca was born in Caracas, Venezuela. Her father was an investment banker and her mother studied International Studies. Her family moved to Connecticut for a time, before returning to Venezuela, where she was privately educated and was introduced to piano lessons. She released music in her teen years by the name of Nuuro, and received moderate popularity in her home country, with praise from big national artists such as Los Amigos Invisibles.[9] She later attended the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music at NYU.[10]


On 1 February 2012, Arca released her debut extended play (EP), Baron Libre, through UNO NYC.[11] Later that year, she released the Stretch 1 and Stretch 2 EPs on 19 April and 6 August respectively.[12][13]

In 2013, Arca was credited for additional production, programming and songwriting for five of the songs on Kanye West's Yeezus, which was released on 18 June. She also served as one of the three production consultants.[14] That same year on 23 July, she released her &&&&& mixtape through SoundCloud and Hippos in Tanks.[15] The project included an audio-visual performance alongside Jesse Kanda, who contributed the visuals, at MoMA PS1 in October 2013.[16] On 17 September, FKA Twigs' EP2 was released, on which Arca produced and co-wrote every song.[17]

Her debut studio album, Xen, was released on 4 November 2014 via Mute Records.[18] Arca made significant contributions to Björk's ninth studio album Vulnicura which was released on 20 January 2015.[6] She was credited as the co-producer of seven of the tracks, and the co-writer of two.[19][20] Arca collaborated with American singer Kelela on her Hallucinogen EP, which was released in October 2015. She's credited for producing, recording, mixing and co-writing two of the tracks, including the title track, which is an instrumental from Arca's &&&&& mixtape with Kelela adding improvised vocals.[21] Her second studio album, Mutant, was released on 20 November 2015.[22] She released the Entrañas mixtape on 4 July 2016, following the single "Sin Rumbo".

On 22 February 2017, Arca signed with XL Recordings and released "Piel", the first single from the eponymous third studio album, Arca,[23] which was released on 7 April 2017 to widespread acclaim from music critics and was featured on numerous year-end lists.[24] Later in 2017, Arca collaborated with Björk again on her ninth studio album Utopia, who co-produced the vast majority of the record.[25] Björk explained that the album explored "the Arca-Björk overlap."[26] A music video featuring Arca for "Arisen My Senses" was released on 18 December 2017.[27] Arca also collaborated with Kelela on her debut studio album, Take Me Apart, released in October 2017. Kelela said she "anchored" the album and produced a bulk of it.[28] She's credited for producing on four tracks, and co-writing two.[29] A forthcoming studio album from Arca is set for release in the fall.[30]

Personal life[edit]

Arca identifies as non-binary,[31] and uses the pronouns it or she.[32][33][34][35]


Studio albums[edit]


Extended plays[edit]

  • Baron Libre (2012)
  • Stretch 1 (2012)
  • Stretch 2 (2012)

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Awards Work Category Result
2014 Rober Awards Music Poll Herself Best Electronica Nominated
2015 Nominated
2017 Nominated
2018 A2IM Libera Awards Arca Best Outlier Album Nominated
"Reverie" Video of the Year Nominated


  1. ^ Eede, Christian (11 September 2014). "Listen: Arca – Thievery". The Quietus. Retrieved 22 November 2015.
  2. ^ Houlihan, Finn. "Listen: Arca – 'Thievery'". Acclaim Magazine. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
  3. ^ "Arca". Time Out. Retrieved 22 November 2015.
  4. ^ Morse, Eric. "Arca Talks Working With Bjork, Screaming About Sex, Explosive New LP". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 8 July 2017.
  5. ^ Ghersi, Alejandra (8 March 2019). "My 2,500 Hours Playing Guild Wars". Interview Magazine. Retrieved 26 March 2019.
  6. ^ a b Friedlander, Emile (30 September 2014). "Arca Finds Xen". The Fader. Retrieved 18 July 2018.
  7. ^ Saville, Chad. "Venezuelan producer Arca is going to be huge". Beautiful Savage. Retrieved 12 April 2017.
  8. ^ Saxelby, Ruth. "Arca Announces DJ Tour with Total Freedom and Jesse Kanda". The Fader. Retrieved 12 April 2017.
  9. ^ Hutchinson, Kate (17 July 2015). "Arca: 'Nothing is off limits emotionally'". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 November 2015.
  10. ^ Zeichner, Naomi (29 October 2012). "GEN F: Arca". The Fader. Retrieved 25 July 2013.
  11. ^ Hockley-Smith, Sam (1 February 2012). "Download Arca's Debut EP Baron Libre". The Fader. Retrieved 22 January 2014.
  12. ^ Hockley-Smith, Sam (19 April 2012). "Download Arca's Stretch 1 EP". The Fader. Retrieved 27 September 2013.
  13. ^ Ryce, Andrew (17 August 2012). "RA Reviews: Arca - Stretch 2 on UNO (Album)". Resident Advisor. Retrieved 18 July 2018.
  14. ^ "Yeezus Credits" (PDF). Retrieved 25 July 2013.
  15. ^ Minsker, Evan (23 July 2013). "Download Arca's New Mix &&&&&". Pitchfork. Retrieved 27 September 2013.
  16. ^ "Pitchfork's FORMS and MoMA PS1 Present a Multimedia Event Featuring Arca and Jesse Kanda". Pitchfork. 27 September 2013. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
  17. ^ Neyland, Nick (19 September 2013). "FKA Twigs: EP2 Album Review". Pitchfork. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
  18. ^ "Arca Signs to Mute. Debut album Xen out on 3/4 November. Hear the first single Thievery". Mute Records. Retrieved 22 September 2014.
  19. ^ Michaels, Sean (1 October 2014). "Björk working with Kanye producer Arca on next album". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  20. ^ Brandle, Lars (14 January 2015). "Bjork Shares Details on New Album 'Vulnicura'". Billboard. Retrieved 14 January 2015.
  21. ^ Mistry, Anupa (7 October 2015). "Kelela: Hallucinogen EP Album Review". Pitchfork. Retrieved 10 January 2018.
  22. ^ Minsker, Evan; Strauss, Matthew (15 October 2015). "Arca Details New Album Mutant, Shares "EN" Video". Pitchfork. Retrieved 25 April 2016.
  23. ^ "Arca Signs to XL Recordings". XLR8R. 22 February 2017. Retrieved 22 February 2017.
  24. ^ "Arca by Arca". Metacritic. Retrieved 12 January 2018.
  25. ^ Bulut, Selim (5 September 2017). "Björk on finding paradise and her ecstatic return". Dazed. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
  26. ^ Bulut, Selim (15 September 2018). "What we learned from Björk's live Q&A". Dazed. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
  27. ^ Murphy, Sarah (18 December 2017). "Björk Documents Her Own Birth In "Arisen My Senses" Video". Exclaim!. Retrieved 12 January 2018.
  28. ^ Price, Joe (1 August 2017). "Kelela Returns with New Song "LMK"". Pigeons & Planes. Retrieved 12 January 2018.
  29. ^ Take Me Apart (CD liner notes). Kelela. Warp. 2017.CS1 maint: others (link)
  30. ^ "Arca - The Shed". The Shed. Retrieved 5 August 2019.
  31. ^ Ghersi, Alejandra (17 July 2018). "thank u and i am nb". Twitter. Retrieved 26 March 2019.
  32. ^ Ghersi, Alejandra (29 May 2019). "it/she". Instagram. Retrieved 10 June 2019.
  33. ^ Ghersi, Alejandra (19 November 2018). "she slipped their finger into a hole after hesitating". Instagram. Retrieved 26 March 2019.
  34. ^ Ghersi, Alejandra (10 June 2019). "Doña Arca". Instagram. Retrieved 10 June 2019.
  35. ^ Sáez, Carlos (4 March 2019). "Bb arca1000000 wearing Máscara Láser during her performance in Paris". Instagram. Retrieved 26 March 2019.

External links[edit]