La mujer del alféizar by Carmen Segovia
Spanish illustrator Carmen Segovia explores the idea of returning to the outside world in this third intervention on the windows of the Former Residence of the Ambassadors of Spain in Washington, D.C.
It was certainly a very appealing invitation: the chance to explore, through illustration, the idea of “returning to the outside world,” using five windows of the Embassy.
I wondered what outside meant for me. Since March 2020, the value of the outside vs the inside had changed. A door was no longer the only thing separating my house from the street. Now, there was something else, something huge, impassable and hard to assimilate; something that was happening to all of us at the same time, both in my street and on the other side of the world. Coming out of lockdown, stepping out of the house, breaking out of the bubble, getting out of ourselves …. It is proving to be a shifting path that flows, blends, and becomes contaminated, with others and with time.
To create these illustrations, I wanted to play with this strange new link between the inside and the outside, as well as with other dualities that are a part of me when reflecting on how I have lived and still live this process: nostalgia & longing, solitude & companionship, city & nature, reality & imagination, sensual & mental, freedom & confinement…
The windows of a facade may be an uncommon medium for an illustrator, but they are not all that different from vignettes or the pages of a book. In this case, however, passersby will be the audience. I wanted to make use of the sequentiality offered by these five windows to follow a character through five scenes that briefly tell the story of their return to the outside world. Waving hair and curtains. The domestic in the wild and the domesticated wilderness.
Doors in the field that open and call. To feel the body in other dreamed spaces. Fear and desire. The desire to fly.—Carmen Segovia
About Carmen Segovia
Carmen Segovia is a Barcelona-based illustrator specialized in storytelling. She grew up between the outskirts of Barcelona and the desert of Almeria. After initially studying scenography for some time, she then decided to specialize in illustration. In 2002, her illustrations were selected for the Bologna Children’s Book Fair and since then, she has continued working on illustrated storytelling projects.
Her work combines collaborations for international magazines and newspapers with the creation of illustrated stories, comics and other personal projects. She has collaborated with international media such as La Vanguardia, Le Monde and The New Yorker. Many of her books have been published by national and international publishing houses, including Glénat, Reservoir Books, Blackie Books and Almadía. La Noche de la Huida (The Night of the Escape), published by Ekaré in 2021, is her latest illustrated book.
She is a faculty member in the Master’s in Creative Illustration at BAU, Design College of Barcelona. Her work has been internationally awarded and exhibited. Among others, she has received the Junceda Illustration Award, and the Honorable Mention at the Fondo de Cultura Económica’s A la orilla del viento Award.
Her latest personal illustrated storytelling projects are Hiedra Venenosa (Poison Ivy) and Hotel Peninsular.
She currently lives in Barcelona with her daughter and husband.