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, U.Va.

The Fralin is open Tuesday through Sunday. Admission is free. Click here for hours. Please note, second floor galleries (including Earthly Exemplars) will be closed through February 3 during exhibition changeover. The museum will be closed to the public on Saturday, February 11.

The Fralin follows current UVA COVID-19 guidelines.

Focus On: Laura Aguilar

Laura Aguilar (1959–2018). Stillness #24, from the series Stillness, 1999. Gelatin silver print, edition 10/10, 11 x 14 inches. The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia, Museum purchase, 2020.7.2. © Laura Aguilar Trust of 2016. 

02/06/2022 to 06/19/2022

After years of photographing her Los Angeles community, contemporary artist Laura Aguilar (1959–2018), she/her, turned the camera on herself. Initially inspired by and made as a tribute to her friend and mentor, artist Judy Dater, Aguilar created a prolific number of nude self-portraits set in nature. Aguilar’s introduction of her body into the landscapes of Southern California and Texas forces us, as writer and author Macarena Gómez-Barris notes, “to consider the specific histories of violence of American colonization, often captured by the technologies of modernity that took static images of captive indigenous peoples.” 

The four works displayed—from Aguilar’s Stillness and Motion series—were recently acquired for the museum’s permanent collection. The images from Stillness illustrate Aguilar’s self-portraiture while Motion demonstrates her collaboration with other individuals. Both series create powerful visual metaphors connecting her queer, Chicana, fat body to the land she occupies and directly challenge expectations of the nude femme figure in nature established by normative art history. Aguilar’s images visualize myriad modes of identification and enhance visibility for often excluded and disempowered bodies—challenging and subverting thin, white, heterosexual, able-bodied ideals. 

Curated by Hannah Cattarin, they/she, assistant curator. 

This exhibition is made possible through support from The Fralin Museum of Art Volunteer Board. The Fralin Museum of Art’s programming is made possible through generous support from The Joseph and Robert Cornell Memorial Foundation. In-kind donors are: WTJU 91.1 FM and Ivy Publications LLC’s Charlottesville Welcome Book.

Museum Hours

Monday: Closed
Tuesday: 10 am – 5 pm
Wednesday: 10 am – 5 pm
Thursday: 10 am – 5 pm 
Friday: 10 am – 8 pm 
Saturday: 10 am – 5 pm (Please note, the museum will be closed to the public on Saturday, February 11.)
Sunday: 12 pm – 5 pm

The museum is closed on the following holidays: New Year's Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.