Claudia Bernardi, internationally known artist who works in the fields of art, human rights and social justice. She combines installation, sculpture, painting, printmaking, and recently, she has focused her art praxis in community and collaborative art projects working with/ and in collaboration with communities that suffered state terror, violence and with victims of human rights violations.
Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Bernardi lived through the Argentine military junta that ruled the country from 1976 to 1983. In 1984, she returned to Argentina to work in collaboration with the Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team participating in exhumations of mass graves in El Salvador, Guatemala, Argentina, and Ethiopia. Emerging from this experience, Bernardi recognized that art could be used to educate, elucidate, and articulate the communal memories of survivors of human rights atrocities.
In 2004, Bernardi was awarded the Honorary Degree, Doctor of Fine Arts, Honoris Causa by the College of Wooster, Ohio. Bernardi received an MFA from Argentina, MA and MFA from the University of California, Berkeley. She has taught at the Universidad del Salvador, Mills College, San Francisco Art Institute, and the University of Michigan.
Bernardi has exhibited her work nationally and internationally: The International World Peace Center in Hiroshima, The Centre for Building Peace, Donegal, Northern Ireland, The Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, The Sonoma Museum of Contemporary Art, The Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art, The Tokushima Modern Art Museum, The Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, DAH Teatar in Belgrade, Serbia; The University of Haifa, Israel, MACLA, Center for Latin American Studies at UC Berkeley, Carl Gorman Museum at U.C. Davis, Tucson Museum of Art.
Bernardi is the founder and director of the School of Art and Open Studio of Perquin, El Salvador and unprecedented model of art, education and human rights, designing and creating in response to demands, hopes and desires of the community. This model of education and community building known now as the “Perquin Model” has been successfully implanted in Colombia, Guatemala, Mexico, Canada, Switzerland, Northern Ireland and Argentina.
Bernardi is Professor of Community Arts, Diversity Studies and the Graduate Program of Visual and Critical Studies at the California College of the Arts.