A photograph of four abstract paintings with oil paint mixed with sand, on top of a digital print on canvas. The paintings are a mix of sky blue, white and different coloured gestures against darker blue backgrounds. They are hung on a white wall, with a grey floor in front of it in the foreground

donna huanca : Cueva De Copal

Saturday, 5th February 2022 to Sunday, 29th May 2022, 11:00 to 18:00
Booking available from January 2022.
Free entry. Exhibition slots will be bookable in advance. Walk-ins may be available on the day. → Book

image: Donna Huanca CUEVA DE COPAL #1-4 2021
In four parts, each: 255 x 173cm (100 x 68in)
Overall 255 x 692cm  (100 x 272in) Installation View
Courtesy Peres Projects, Berlin


Arnolfini are excited to present CUEVA DE COPAL, a new and immersive site-specific installation by Donna Huanca, a celebrated, rising star of the international art world.

Drawing on painting, sculpture, performance, choreography, video, and sensory interventions, Huanca’s interdisciplinary practice focuses upon the human body, exploring our physical relationship to the world around us.

Huanca builds her experiential installations around the architecture of each new site, with CUEVA DE COPAL plunging audiences into a cocoon-like space. Encouraging audiences to reflect upon their environment, the installation integrates ideas explored through previous installations, in which Huanca has transformed the masonic temple of Marciano Art Foundation in Los Angeles, the early-18th century palace of the Belvedere Museum in Vienna, and the high desert landscape surrounding the Ballroom Marfa in Texas.

Building on past remnants of her own work, Huanca excavates and layers, transforming her live ‘skin’ paintings into new multi-layered and hybrid forms that sit somewhere between performance, sculpture, photography, and painting. Explored within the darkness of CUEVA DE COPAL, these bodily forms take on new lives enhanced by sound, scent, and texture.

Donna’s new commission brings this acclaimed artist to Bristol and the south west for the first time as part of Arnolfini’s commitment to showcasing the best contemporary artists of each generation.


About Donna Huanca:
Donna Huanca (born 1980, Chicago, USA) studied at the Städelschule, Frankfurt as well as the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine and has been the recipient of the DAAD Artist Grant and a Fulbright research grant. Her interdisciplinary practice has evolved across painting, sculpture, performance, choreography, video, and sound, crafting a unique visual language based in collaboration and innovation.

Donna Huanca’s has exhibited around the world and has received many accolades for her work which is held by a number of international public collections.

Donna Huanca is represented by Peres Projects, Travesia Cuatro and Simon Lee Gallery.

Sign up to our newsletter

You can change your mind at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the footer of any email you recieve from us, or by contacting us here. We will treat your information with respect. By clicking below, you agree that we may process your information in accorandce with these terms