Alva Mooses is an interdisciplinary artist. Her work explores the intersections of printed media, ceramics, and sculpture while engaging with earth-based materials to signal the memory of geological time.
Her ceramic series titled ear to the earth/ culebra, truena, tormenta was exhibited at Jane Hartsook Gallery as part of her artist residency at Greenwich House Pottery. The slip-cast reconfigured globes move away from historical representations of the earth as a perfect sphere on a steady axis toward a transformative body—the pieces are glazed, distorted, mended, and kiln-fired multiple times. culebra, truena, tormenta translates to snake, thunder, storm, referring to the Mexica earth and mother goddess Coatlicue whose entire skirt, head, and belt represent snakes. The legendery 16th century Coatlicue statue was buried and unearthed multiple times since the Spanish conquest out of concern that the statue would inspire religious and political resistance; it now lives in the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City.
The writer Mirene Arsanios describes Alva’s ceramic globe series as: “Broken or no longer erect, the globe stands and their measuring systems are inoperative—the deconstructed globes undermine the project of western geography and the violence of its measuring tools, favoring instead a world, earth, and planet governed by the erotics of its own materials.” Alva holds a BFA from The Cooper Union and an MFA from Yale University. She has exhibited her work in the U.S., Latin America, and Europe. She has completed fellowships and residencies at the Lower East Side Printshop, Shandaken Projects, Socrates Sculpture Park, Center for Book Arts, Greenwich House Pottery, The University of Chicago, Tou Trykk in Stavanger, Norway, and Casa Wabi, in Oaxaca, Mexico, among others. She serves on the faculty at Hunter College in the Department of Art and Art History and lives with her daughter and partner in Brooklyn.