Elsa Muñoz opens new exhibition at Zygman Voss Gallery

Elsa Muñoz and Sergio Gomez at the opening of From Motion to Stillness at the Zhou B Art Center. Artwork behind them by Jason John.

I have been a big fan of Elsa Muñoz ever since I first saw her work some years ago. Last Friday, I previewed her new exhibition titled  “Transience” as she makes her debut with Zygman Voss Gallery in River North, Chicago. After a successful exhibition at the National Museum of Mexican Art (2011) followed by a solo show at former Dubhe Carreno Gallery (2012), Elsa emerges from a season of quietness and intense production by presenting an outstanding exhibition not to be missed this Spring.

Gallery owner Nancy Voss and Sergio Gomez

Transience features new landscapes and figurative realistic works simultaneously. Elsa’s dramatic interpretations using the chiaroscuro technique suggest a sense of psychological turbulence (night scenes) while enchanting us with a touch of quiet serenity, mystery and hope. Personally, I feel that her current work is introspective in nature and speaks about change. Not the change that results from sudden, unexpected situations but rather, the one that comes along in the most passive of moments.  Whether  contemplating the seashore, along a narrow path in the heavy woods or even in the midst of a forest fire, Elsa’s mysterious night scenes project a constant state of personal reflection and respect for the inevitability of life’s transforming moments.  Besides the landscape works, Elsa’s figurative paintings in the exhibition are exquisite conversations with our very own humanity. The subject, usually a young woman, refuses to be identified only passing by quietly, reverently and pensive.  It is that mystery of presence and strangeness of place that I love about Elsa’s new body of work.  I sensed no fear in these dark works, rather, a strange peaceful awareness that life is about quiet encounters and solemn conspicuous moments of change.

Elsa Munoz
Braid 1
H 29in x W 29in

Perhaps, these paintings have a completely different meaning for Elsa. But for me, I left the exhibition understanding more about her, myself and humanity as a whole.  In that sense, those were the best moments of that day, not knowing that I was going to be confronted with truth disguised in the brushstrokes of art.  In a time when a lot of the art I encounter is completely separated from my own life experience, I welcome moments like this and I enjoy them to the core for they are rare engagements.

Zygman Voss Gallery
Exhibition Runs: April 30 – June 1

For more information, visit the gallery website:


Elsa Munoz
The Doorway
H 29in x W 29in
Elsa Munoz
Nightshore 5
H 12in x W 9in


  1. hi Sergio,Thanks for another great blog. I used the idea of self documentation during the painting process, but not with a program, just my camera. From there I put images into PowerPoint…. it’s a beginning. Fussy, but worth it.I’ll be in Chicago next week for the Opening at WomanMade Gallery. One of my sheetrock grids will be included in Human Beings II. That’s my first experience with a Chi gallery, BUT am so needing it. Then I hope to look around for another day. Will stay in the area at a B&B. I’m excited to have this opportunity, hope to meet you.

    Loretta Bebeau, M.A. 612.462.3270 http://www.mnartists.org/loretta_bebeauDate: Mon, 29 Apr 2013 12:13:50 +0000 To: labebeau@msn.com

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