Carina R. Santos

I am an artist, designer, and writer with a penchant for yarn, mountains, and bad T.V.


︎ Art
︎ Design
︎ Writing (wip)

Latent fictions
11 July — 2 August 2020
Solo exhibition — MO_Space

Latent fictions is a new collection of work by Carina Santos, born from the specific restlessness that comes from a prolonged state of rootedness.

The paintings for Latent fictions were created over the course of the lock down, when London closed most establishments and encouraged people to stay home, if they are not frontliners or are non-essential workers. Though ensconced in a comfortable shared space with one other person, Santos was unable to go to her studio for almost three months, and so these pieces were largely worked on in her house. For three months, she and her flatmate lived with these paintings, and it became part of their daily views and daily routine, the third occupant of their council flat.

The paintings are meant to be portraits of the tension when the fear of and desire for movement coalesce into a single feeling. Her previous work had aimed to encapsulate a peaceful, though sometimes lonely, strain of solitude, but here, she finds herself in a kind of prison that she cannot figure out how to move away from. The tumult and unsettledness of these paintings echo the inner workings of her life as a transplant in another country, trying to make a life in a new place, during a time of incredible uncertainty and precarity.

Santos’ landscapes are imagined destinations, a study in the construction of something new, based only on memory and familiarity. They carry the enormity of what ails her; they are projections of her anxieties. These are made-up places — certain things she wants to arrive at but can never get to, impossibilities that are made even more real by the absurdities of the state of the world where she is, and everywhere else. These landscapes are latent fictions, snapshots of a life in the process being actual, being real.

Latent Fictions I-XX
Mixed media on paper

Installation view