In her series of works known as ‘Constructal.’, Chilean artist Juana Gómez explores the relationship between the human body and the environment.
The portraits are inspired by Physicist Adrian Bejan’s constructal law of nature, which proposes that recurring designs arise in all living systems, and that these designs have a universal tendency to evolve in a certain direction over time.
“There is fundamental law that can be seen in the veins of a leaf, the course of rivers and their tributaries, the circuits of the central nervous system, the currents of the sea and the routes of traffic on the Internet. Deciphering this common language, which connects the micro cosmos with the macro cosmos, the external and the interior world, allows us to distinguish a pattern that influences inert, biological, social and cultural systems.”
– Juana Gómez via juanagomez.com
To reflect this theory of flow systems, Gómez prints photographs of herself onto canvas which she then embroiders and sketches with neurons, blood vessels and lymph nodes in branch-like patterns. The works are a result of a life-time fascination with embroidery, which is shared by three generations of her family.
By creating self portraits which include her piercings and numerous tattoos, Gómez challenges the the notion of the traditional anatomical model, which is often represented as a featureless figure of a certain age and body type.
A detailed collection of her works and personal statements can be found here. All images remain property of the artist.