Chilean photographer Paz Errázuriz began taking photographs in the 1970s during the Pinochet dictatorship, and in subsequent decades travelled extensively to document the landscape and people of her native country. Throughout her dedicated practice, Errázuriz became intimate with not only her home city, Santiago, but also Chile’s central valley, Patagonia, and Valparaíso, forming long-lasting relationships with her many subjects. Her commitment to her subjects is steadfast—she is known for spending months or years within a given community, building trust and carefully studying social structures. During the dictatorship her projects were in violation of the regulations imposed by the military regime, as she dared to visit underground brothels, shelters, psychiatric wards, and boxing clubs, where women were not welcome.
In the words of author Gerardo Mosquera, “the spaces explored in Errázuriz’s photos—beyond the striking personalities—reveal an extreme aesthetic that also exposes the potholes and irregularities left in the path of modernization. Her work consistently focuses on the social marginality that continues to plague the country, thereby capsizing Chile’s image of buoyancy by intuitively penetrating the contradictions—the innumerable cracks and fissures—that persist to this day.”
Errázuriz is one of the most internationally recognised Chilean photographers. In 2015, she represented Chile at the Venice Biennale. Her work has been exhibited extensively internationally and most recently she has had a retrospective at Fundación MAPFRE which will travel to Jeu de Paume-Tours in 2015. Her work was also included in ‘Another Kind of Life: Photography on the Margins’ at the Barbican Art Gallery, London in 2018.