Arista Slater-Sandoval was born and raised in Grand Rapids Michigan and moved in 2007 to Washington D.C. to pursue a BFA in photography at the Corcoran College of Art and Design. While there she completed a 5 months Teachers Assistance and residency program in New York city at the Center for Alternative Photography. After completing a BFA, she moved to Cambridge MA, and attend the College of Art and Design at Lesley University where she obtained a MFA in Fine Art Photography in 2013. While in grad school she pursued issues in communication, identity, love and romance thought alternative photographic processes.
Since moving to Santa Fe in 2016, she works full time at the Institute of American Indian Art while balancing studio time. She continues to work in alternative photographic processes and approaches while tackling large issues in feminine and multi-racial representation, domestic spheres and intimate relationships.
I work at the intersection of alternative photographic processes and contemporary media. By using photography as a base from which to experiment, along with contemporary methodologies, I create image based mixed media works. My work is largely autobiographic, it is an alternate venue for the impulse to confess; an offering of the revealed, personal experience when words are not enough.
Direct manipulation of images, alternative substrates and organic materials articulate distress and pleasures I have experienced. I do not focus on the negativity of heartbreak or the singularity of a relationship or experience, but use the extremes of experiences as fodder for creative interpretation of daily life. Using found and collected materials, works take on a deconstructed cultural memory while reconstructing personal history. The use of alternative photographic processes and nontraditional image presentation are as important as the index of the image itself in conveying layered human experiences. The varied processes are my methods and language of communicating my compulsory efforts of human will.