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2022 DeChaunac Alexis 00

Alexis de Chaunac (School of the Art Institute of Chicago) is a recipient of the 2022 Master of Fine Arts Fellowship in Painting & Sculpture.

Alexis De Chaunac approaches his work like an archeologist, uncovering layers of our collective experience. His body of work is the result of his personal connection to his Mexican and French heritage, as well as his interwoven cultural histories. De Chaunac recently found inspiration in the forms of Milagros — charm-like metal objects that can be used for healing purposes and as votive offerings. These magical objects, also referred to as ex-votos, were used to ward off disease, pain, and misfortune.

De Chaunac’s works often confront the viewer with the immediacy of life-size organs – lungs, feet, eyes, hands, hearts – all laid out bare. The forms operate both individually and in communication with one another, creating a hieroglyphic lexicon waiting to be deciphered. Having lived in and through a pandemic, he feels that the depiction of the body’s internal forms takes on a new relevancy and vulnerability.