“Two energies, or two competing forces, are at work in the photographic montages of Andrea Rocha (b. 1964, Rio de Janeiro). These warring visual phenomena, which we could refer to by what Sartre called the real and the ‘irreal’, come down to the manipulation of skin and paper in the collaged space of the artworks. Rocha, by turns across several projects, will either insert her own face into a glossy world of printed images, a real body attempting to become part of the photographic surface; or she brings images from the magazine pages into reality, in playful dioramas; paper dolls that try and escape into three-dimensional physicality.
A defining characteristic of Rocha’s imagery is a sense of unrest, restlessness. Fizzing, the eye flies whirring through weightless spaces with the energy of an out of control drone. The characters, shapes and surfaces of the image flit across constructed spatial dimensions, real space, internal space, pictorial space, and oscillate dizzily between scales and proportions. Life size, or doll size? As photographs of incidents, Rocha’s images induce the vertigo of the fabulous tales of an unreliable narrator.”