Jul 22nd 2022

Paloma Valencia: Souvenirs

@ The Martin

2500 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60622

Opening Friday, July 22nd, from 6PM - 9PM

On view through Saturday, August 20th

“Memories, they can’t be boughten

They can’t be won at

carnivals for free

Well it took me years to get

those souvenirs

And I don’t know how they

slipped away from me.”

· John Prine

Join us for the celebration of the opening of Paloma Valencia’s solo exhibition, SOUVENIRS!

About the exhibition, Paloma shares:

A souvenir is a printed commemorative object of a landmark, connected to memory. For some, the landmarks in their lives – physical spaces imbued with personal significance – don’t sell souvenirs. The dive bars where deep loneliness is felt, the gas stations that sell quick meals before driving on in the cold night, or the motels where tired bags are dropped don’t have the same appeal and protections that designated landmarks have. Nonetheless, artist Paloma Valencia believes that these transient places deserve the same commitment to remembrance. In her creative practice, Paloma questions her own fraught relationship to American commercial architecture and cultural identity. With close relationships to her nomadic, immigrant family who left Cuba due to political upheaval, she seeks to create her own heirlooms in response to the loss of records, photographs, and mementos. As the daughter of two architects, she brings her critical eye to architecture and printed media’s shared chase for permanence. In commemorating the essence of these structures through varied mark-making, Paloma considers her works to be portraits of buildings that share the same visual language of convenience – a language that transcends physical and generational distance. Building imagery through the reductive process of carving and the multiplicative process of printing, she seeks to preserve and share the distinct sensory details of the spaces she inhabits. As structures change and memories are collected and reimagined over time, Paloma works against the inevitable to record these familiar storefronts and interiors before they slip away.

SOUVENIRS opens July 22nd and remains up at The Martin through August 20th. Our opening exhibition will be from 6-9pm – free to RSVP! All guests must provide proof of vaccination upon arrival.



The Martin is an artist-first full service creative space led by Founder & Curator Whitney LaMora. Founded in 2018, The Martin has proudly been the home of over 450 public events. Relocated due to COVID-19, they currently share a home with beloved neighborhood restaurant, Split-Rail and are located above the cocktail lounge, Dorothy.

Want to dine at Split-Rail before seeing the exhibition? We recommend making a reservation!

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