You Have Their Eyes

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You Have Their Eyes

November 3, 2021 - November 24, 2021

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In their early 20’s, Scout Cartagena was diagnosed with a rare auto-immune disorder that interrupted their life forever. They began to feel like a stranger to their own body. With each passing year, Scout loses parts of their memory and mobility, fueling their desire to preserve their sense of self by creating art that is tangible. Through You Have Their Eyes, Scout uses art to process their identity as a queer, Afro-latinx, and non-able bodied person. Using reflection, diffusion, imagery, and transparency as metaphors, Scout is working to unearth the identity they have come to know against the memory they have begun to lose. 

“This work focuses on memory, but mainly ties into memories becoming a physical form of heirlooms. I’ve never really had anything passed down to me that feels tangible, except my health, the melanin in my skin. I’ve inherited my father’s temper, my mothers laugh, the tongue for rolling my “r”s but lack the ear for knowing what anyone is saying to me, and their collective chronic illnesses; their early grays and the loss of memory. 

These are my heirlooms. When my cheeks peel and my joints ache I am reminded of my mother battling lupus and how I now do too. When I stand in a room, staring at the furniture as if it’ll tell me why I walked in, when I cry over photos of who I was, I am my father. Even with these connections, I am at a loss of who I am and strive to create these heirlooms that remind me I am of these things and so much more.” – Scout Cartagena. 

You Have Their Eyes by Scout Cartagena is an immersive installation, reminiscent of home and meant to unearth the artist memories. The installation is  composed of glass, print and altered furniture. You Have Their Eyes will be on view in Gallery 1 beginning November 3rd, and will be available as a video walkthrough shortly after. The opening reception will take place on Thursday November 4th, from 6-8pm.


Scout Cartagena is a multidisciplinary artist working in various craft practices through printmaking, glass, and audio and video work since 2013. She draws from mental health and her personal narrative as a queer Black woman to create a strong thread of representation in larger compositions and forms of installation. She brings a fleeting sense of family to her glass installations dealing with memory, mental health, and chronic illness by creating multi-sensory pieces.

Scout’s evolution into glass allowed her to introduce sculpture into her work in 2017 and has extended her work into forms of large installations that allow viewers to connect through her memories and pre-existing conditions.

Cartagena has been awarded the Jon Clark Glass Scholarship (2019), a scholarship to the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Deer Isle, Maine (2019), and was nominated for the Windgate Fellowship (2020).



November 3, 2021
November 24, 2021
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Da Vinci Art Alliance
704 Catharine Street
Philadelphia, PA United States
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