Cristina Morales is a cultural activist. An applied anthropologist and transdisciplinary cultural practitioner working internationally as a critical researcher, writer, educator, and social practice curator-artist at the intersection of art and politics for self and social development. She is a singular trauma-informed cultural strategist linking the full spectrum of human sciences with a practice rooted in a decolonial and hence intersectional approach to activism, and a social practice approach to art. She understands healing, health, and the expansion of personal and community growth as a necessarily interdependent exercise on a multidimensional holistic level. And art, not as a commodified symbolic product to sell feeding into capitalist structures that confirm the reality we currently live in, but as a relational process that can intervene in reality to transform the current inner and social order and the notion of art/artist in itself. Her work and interests involve but are not limited to public engagement, co-led and critical spatial practices, relational learning and alternative forms of knowledge production, radical imagination, alternative art circuits, avant-garde art, african/diaspora arts & culture, and ultimately holistic health.

In addition to being the founding curator of Counterspace and the founding artist of Totem Taboo, Cristina is currently a freelance writer published by international media such as the Institute of Contemporary Arts (London), El Mundo (Madrid), Humanities, Arts & Society (Paris), A Beautiful Resistance (Seattle), Inhabit (Global), Ouvrage (Montreal), and Radio Africa (Barcelona). She is also occasionally a guest speaker for organisations such as the Social Art Network (UK), and guest lecturer for universities such as ABK Stuttgart University of Art & Design (Germany). In 2021, she was granted an artist fellowship at Design Science Studio by Buckminster Fuller Institute and HabRitual (San Francisco) as part of an international cohort of what they called ‘revolutionary artists’ and their decade-long movement ‘The Regenaissance’: a global confluence of multidisciplinary creators of regenerative futures. Her first co-written book  ‘Emerging Desires. Planting critical seeds on decoloniality and psychoanalysis’ will be published in 2023. 

Growing up navigating intergenerational trauma as a first post-fascist-dictatorship generation (preceded by the Spanish Civil War), being the grandkid of Andalusian rural migrants and interested in deepening her knowledge of human beings, she studied a Bachelor of Sociocultural Anthropology at the University of Barcelona (2008-2011). It was then when, alongside the conditioning of her intersectional oppression and her experience with psychoanalysis, she started to develop her both personal and political consciousness. Driven by an INFJ-A personality type defined as idealist by Jung / Myers & Briggs, her boundless curiosity also had a passion for art as our human expressive language par excellence and our best asset to question, imagine, create, and inhabit meaning generating other realities, not to say art as the whole process. At a time when there weren’t any social practice art degrees in Spain, but while already professionally active entrepreneuring in that niche, she studied a Master of Cultural Management from the Open University of Catalonia (2012-2014). After finishing her academic studies, she migrated to the Afro-Caribbean neighbourhood of Brixton, in London, to continue pursuing that call.

Throughout her career Cristina has challenged transversely neocolonial / neoliberal products such as the art market, gentrification, and the anthropocene, as well as the rest of their hegemonic and intertwined social constructs (such as nation, class, gender, disability, sexual orientation, faith, and race …) curating and creating political, public, and participatory arts, co-designing decolonial toolkits, and organising global networks. The intersectional scope of her practice has in the past led her to work with a range of international freelance projects, as well as private, public, and non-profit organisations, covered by media such as The Guardian, BBC News, Essence, and True Africa. Projects and organisations such as HostelArt, Ribermusica, and Interarts in Barcelona or Black Cultural Archives, Peckham Platform, and Disability Arts Online in London and the UK, to mention a few. Clients and collaborations include Extinction Rebellion (London), Africa Utopia at Southbank (London), Gal-dem (London), Autograph ABP (London), Quai Branly Museum (Paris), Plurality University Network (Paris), Notting Hill Carnival (London), Antiuniversity Now (London), Klimafestivalen + Fashion Revolution (Oslo), Brighton Pride (Brighton), Utopian Studies Society (Global), Afropunk (Paris), and Actipedia by Center for Artistic Activism (New York), among many others.

Cristina is quadrilingual and has lived with, enjoys travelling to, and is forever learning from different world cultures. Beyond her passion for natural and cultural biodiversity, her core motivation other than her story is a profound respect for life, and for expansive consciousness as a determinant of experience in its full potential. It translates to a myriad of life-supporting fields with a common denominator: they are holistically looking at the powerful mystery of both ourselves and the tapestry of our world, at our creativity and liberating practices, and our ability to live becoming.

This site and work are a polymathic counter-archive of common visionary resources and experiences shaping alternative imaginaries and social poetics in the building of another present and future.

Featured image: Photography by Williamz Omope. Antiflag by Totem Taboo. London, 2017.