puerto rican artist sofia maldonado has enveloped the exterior and interior walls of a tobacco factory caguas, puerto rico in swathes of multicolored paint. entitled ‘kalaña’, the polychromatic intervention is part of the artist’s wider ‘cromática: caguas a color’ project, which sees maldonado collaborate with six other artists to revitalize unused buildings and spaces through and for the use of art. 

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maldonado transformed the factory from a place of abandonment to a springboard for community engagement
all images © mónica félix

 

 

covering the site in vibrant shades of color, sofia maldonado transformed the factory from a place of abandonment to a cultural springboard for community engagement. with a new lick of paint, the building became a host to workshops, presentations, lectures, musical performances and tours, all centered around the dynamic new palette of the factory’s architecture. 

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entitled ‘kalaña’, the polychromatic intervention is part of the artist’s wider ‘cromática: caguas a color’ project,

 

 

‘my work is mainly inspired by colors and also by the caribbean way of living; just experiencing light and color,’ explains maldonado. ‘the project itself is not just painting an abandoned building. it’s also the idea of having an agenda. it’s a different format of how a public art piece can also become a creative and educational hub.’ 

 

the project is located in a community where tension exists between local domincan and puerto rican populations. ‘kalaña’ was imagined as a meeting place and community focal point where youths and adults alike could come for creative motivation, to fuel a localized sense of commonality. ‘for me, it works as a piece when it’s activated’, continues maldonado. ‘when there’s people in it: that’s the piece.’

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the building became a host to workshops, presentations, lectures, musical performances and tours

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‘my work is mainly inspired by colors and also by the caribbean way of living; just experiencing light and color,’

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the project is located in a community where tension exists between local domincan and puerto rican populations

sofia-maldonado-kalana-designboom-10
the project itself is not just painting an abandoned building. it’s also the idea of having an agenda

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‘kalaña’ was imagined as a meeting place where youths and adults alike could come for creative motivation

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the walls were painted using a cherry picker and a spray hose, for expressionistic application of color

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makeshift ramps are constructed from wooden pallets for sports and cycling activities

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the building is submerged in color, from the floor to the ceiling, every nook and cranny is brought to life

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for me, it works as a piece when it’s activated. when there’s people in it: that’s the piece.

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  • The photo documentation of “Kalaña” is by Monica Felix (photographer credit).

    Thanks for the article, such an honor!

    Sofia Maldonado says:

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