Patricia van Dalen

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Patricia Van Dalen 2016.jpg
Patricia Van Dalen
Born 1955
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Education Graphic Design School
Occupation Visual artist

Patricia Van Dalen (born in 1955 in Venezuela, with Dutch roots), is a Miami based visual artist, with a well recognized career that spans over thirty years, dedicated to abstract painting, ephemeral site-specific installations, and designing permanent works for public places and private architectural spaces.

Early life[edit]

Patricia Van Dalen was born in Maracaibo, Zulia State, in western Venezuela. With a Dutch father and a Venezuelan mother, Van Dalen has always beenimmersed in both cultures. She lives her first years in Maracaibo, then moves with her family to Holland; then in 1962 moves back to Venezuela, to the capital, Caracas; and now lives in the US. Van Dalen graduated from high school in 1970, and went on to study in the prestigious Neumann Institute Of Design (Instituto de Diseño Fundación Neumann-INCE), in Caracas, where she graduated in 1977 as a graphic designer. Intermittently between 1980 and 1986, the artist trained and lived in Paris, while she worked with the kinetic artist Yaacov Agam in the Visual Education Method for pre-school children. Most of her artistic career was developed in Caracas, Venezuela, where she is recognized as a preeminent artist. Van Dalen currently resides and works in Miami, FL, US.


Van Dalen taught in the Design Institute Foundation, and at the Architecture School of the Central University of Venezuela, among other institutions; and frequently conducts color and visual workshops.

Jardín Lumínico of Patricia Van Dalen, Autopista de Prados del Este, Caracas, Venezuela

Patricia Van Dalen´s work has been exhibited since 1978; she has been part of a great variety of individual and collective exhibitions, both in Venezuela and around the world; she has received well-known local awards, and therefore her paintings are spread in both public and private collections. In 2011 Van Dalen earned the 2010 Established Artist AICA Award, from the International Association of Art Critics / Venezuela Chapter. Van Dalen's work has extensively contributed to mural art and artistic interventions in public spaces, like the 1,200 sqm Mural Jardín Lumínico in the Prados del Este Freeway, and Mural Pajaritos, both in Caracas, and the main plaza floor Jardín de Calas, Río Caribe, a village in eastern Venezuela. Van Dalen has an extensive body of work related to architectural spaces as well, in private residences in Venezuela and the US, where she has intervened walls, ceilings, rooftops, pool areas, and floors, as part of the interior and landscape design of these places. Her interest in the social dimension of artistic production has led her to frequently incorporating installations and other kinds of ephemeral works, into public spaces where the presence of art is not usually expected. Examples of this are the large scale site-specific installation Luminous Gardens, at the Fairchild Tropical Garden in 2003; and Fragmented Light, an ephemeral intervention of the stairway walls of the Miller Learning Center, at the University of Georgia, in Athens, GA. Her work has been collected by institutions such as: Museum of Latin American Art, MoLAA, Los Angeles, CA, US; Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, Coral Gables, FL, US; and, in Caracas, Venezuela, the Museo de Bellas Artes, Galería de Arte Nacional, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo, among others.

In Miami, Van Dalen took up photography in order to develop an unusual body of work that she displayed in December 2013 in ArtMedia Gallery, Wynwood. The explorations with this medium that Van Dalen employed in her studies in the 70's, has led her to find new ways to link up with her previous productions, unfolding new artistic configurations that are distinct from the former. Van Dalen is preparing again a photography-based project for an exhibition that would take place in 2017.

In 2014, Van Dalen created by commission the Data Hall, a permanent site-specific installation for the University of Miami's Center for Computational Sciences. The mural consists of a set of motherboards, which originally formed a part of UM’s first supercomputer, named Pegasus. The boards were altered with plastic lacings that criss-cross and converge into nodes in a scale-free network. These drawings not only communicate Van Dalen's interest on new ways of making art by combining aesthetically compatible materials and thereby producing paradoxical images; they also aid her in the attempts to comprehend the concept of data processing in a tactile and visual manner.

After leading a versatile trajectory, Van Dalen is currently working in many different projects: stapled painted papers, paintings on canvas, collages on paper, photographic installations, rug designs, among others, and she conducts visual workshops in her studio in artsy Wynwood.


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