"I wanted to force myself to be uncomfortable, to be noticeable, to be loud"

XOGORDA

Multidisciplinary Artist

Puerto Rico

Who are you?

Honestly I hate this question and love this question. Depends on the particular day and mood

really, but the way I see it, I am everything and I am nothing; a human who creates things.

My name is Queli (spanish for Kelly) and I make art that makes me feel.


What kind of art do you make?

I try not to limit myself so I experiment in a lot of different mediums. I paint and get to channel a

lot of my creative energy through there, but I needed another way to create, to work through

some stuff that was building up.


Maybe before you ask me what I create, you should ask me why I create.

I create because I have to, because it’s my way of understanding and relating to the world

around me. I create because it helps me work through all the bullshit. I create because it’s my

way of speaking to the world. I create because art is my constant and like breathing.


I KNOW I am not the only one in this universe who struggles with loving exactly who she is.

Pero, I learned this new word: MULTIDISCIPLINARY ARTIST. Beautiful right? It means more

than one discipline. I started out painting (still very much painting and exploring) and currently

working on becoming a full time artist, but I don’t want to limit my process. I want to give myself

the freedom to explore, working through different mediums.


This is where performance art came into my life. It started out as mostly just a personal

experiment. I wanted to force myself to be uncomfortable, to be noticeable, to be loud. To stop

making myself disappear. So I turned on the camera one night in my room and started recording

myself. Let’s just say things got really weird. I had no trust in my body to do anything and I

wasn’t sure who was more unforgiving, me or the camera.


But I kept coming back. It was like therapy and when I was done it felt SO GOOD, cathartic

even! I couldn’t explain it. I was finally giving myself the space to be weird, to just be and do

whatever. It was through this that I started finally seeing myself differently and really allowing

myself to be, to exist as I am.


Part of the experiment was to share the experience, so I created @xogordaxqueli to document

the experience and archive these videos.


What is XOGORDA?

XOGORDA means hugs and kisses fat girl. So it’s like a signature but also it’s a

message/reminder to love. I KNOW I am not the only one in this universe who struggles with

loving exactly who she is.


XOGORDA is a space to create, to grow, and to love. I give you permission to come in and sit

down with me for a while, to observe in silence, maybe make yourself uncomfortable and learn

why? Observation is EXTREMELY POWERFUL and allows us to understand so much yet we practice

it so little. To truly sit and observe another person, their movements, the sounds they make

when they breathe, how they feel, how sadness looks on the body; how they transform from one

minute to the next.


What has been the hardest part about filming yourself?

Sharing it online.

Sharing them with anybody really. I create in the safety of my room with NO ONE watching so

the idea that you are WILLINGLY sharing your most intimate moments terrifies me.

Everything else is a learning curve and I am surprised at all the things I have learned while

creating and exploring!


What’s next?

A lot of experimenting, filming, exploring. I am currently working on putting together a costume

for the next short film. Learning to sew a tutu is really what’s next.


If people only read this one question, what do you want them to read?

Be open to all the possibilities of you.


IG: @xogordaxqueli