João Penalva


João Penalva is a Portuguese artist who has been living in the UK since studying at Chelsea School of Art in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Making art is his second career – in his first he was a dancer, working with Pina Bausch and Gerhard Bohner. His work betrays this history - it is primarily about storytelling through the partnership of images and elaborate often beguiling narratives. Penalva is known for making large-scale installations in various media, as well as more intimate works with video and slide projections, sound, drawing, painting and found materials. Through these media he addresses narrative modes and the relationships between images, text, language and sound. His storytelling is often fractured, presenting juxtaposed narrative elements, allowing the viewer a latitude of freedom in their interpretation.

Selected Works
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