Swivel Gallery is pleased to present “The Strongest Alive or Dead,” a new series of works on paper accompanied by a seminal curio centerpiece by Amy Bravo.  Featured in the exhibition are a range of drawings which summon forth Bravo’s distinct system of characters, themes, and symbols: the essential constituents of the artist’s personal mythos.

Seamlessly integrating the artifacts of Cuban religious culture, her family’s history, and her own inventions, the imagery brought to the fore in Bravo’s works on paper expands upon the artist’s compelling set of coming-of-age narratives that have thus far defined her work.  Although Bravo is best known for her large-scale mixed-media pieces and sculptures, drawing is an essential part of her practice.

These works on paper serve as intimate windows into the thematic underpinnings that shape her worlds, offering a raw glimpse into their process of development. More pervasive than anything else is the presence of Bravo’s long-haired, blank-eyed beings, floating in costumes of feisty psychopomps, boxers, and medusas within the liminal space of paper. Multi-faceted and purgatorial, they traverse scenes that encapsulate both resilience and disintegration, seemingly entrapped within a looped hero's journey that reflects back the artist’s convoluted human experiences. Though their demeanor mimics the stiffness of icons in religious architecture, a mischievous and almost primal aura emanates from them, compelling us to follow along with their losses and victories.

In parallel to her expansive mixed-media installations and sculptures, Bravo's drawings ardently strive to bring together chimerical identities. They engage in an endeavor to decrypt the essence of a lost or fragmented ancestral home, while simultaneously sketching the contours of a future brimming with equal parts destiny and danger. "The Strongest Alive or Dead" not only showcases the evolution of the artist’s journey but also invites us to immerse ourselves in her ever-expanding cosmos.