Joana Vasconcelos' practice toys with the appropriation and de-contextualisation of everyday objects and realities. Her work is usually site-specific and includes performance components that encourage viewers to physically engage with her sculptures.Read More
The Bride (A Noiva) (2001–05) is one of Vasconcelos' most famous artworks. For this sculpture, the artist designed a twenty-foot high chandelier that replaced the structure's traditional crystal adornments with cotton tampons. By swapping crystals for tampons, Vasconcelos constructs a powerful metaphor for femininity in the contemporary.
In 2012, Vasconcelos was invited to exhibit her work at the Palace of Versailles in France. The exhibition made Vasconcelos the first woman and the youngest artist to show her work at the château's annual contemporary art exhibition.
In this exhibition, Vasconcelos explores the mythology and grandeur of Versailles while transporting it into the contemporary. Her sculpture, Marilyn (2009), presents an oversized pair of high heel shoes made from stainless steel saucepans and their lids. By merging a domestic object with the romantic and elegant symbol of high heels, Vasconcelos references the private and public roles women are often expected to play in society.
In 2018, Vasconcelos was commissioned to design a permanent installation for part of the extension of the T3 tramline in Paris. Titled Coeur de Paris, Vasconcelos' artwork is made up of nearly 4000 tiles and includes lights that turn on and off to the rhythm of a beating heart.