Cristina Morales is cultural activist – a transdisciplinary cultural practitioner with international experience working as researcher, writer, curator, speaker, critical pedagogue and artist at the intersection of art and politics for self and social development. Her practice is rooted in a creative and decolonial (hence holistic) approach to activism that designs experiences understanding healing, health, and the expansion of both personal and community development as a necessarily interdependent exercise on a physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social and natural level. A singular trauma-informed cultural strategist linking creative practice with decolonial theory and the full spectrum of human sciences.
Cristina is currently freelancing as project manager for Disability Arts Online (UK) launching Onyx, an artist-led collective of ethnically diverse disabled artists. She is the founding curator of Counterspace, the first decolonial thinktank mapping cultural activism worldwide, and founding artist of Totem Taboo, the first Situationist ‘brand’ designing political scenes and scenic artefacts (both international). And she is a freelance writer on decoloniality, cultural activism, and African/diaspora arts & culture, 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).
Growing up navigating intergenerational trauma as a first post-Franco’s fascist dictatorship generation (preceded by the Spanish Civil War), and interested in deepening her knowledge of human beings, she studied a BA in Sociocultural Anthropology at the University of Barcelona. It was then when, along with her socially oppressed intersectional conditioning and her experience with psychoanalysis, she started to develop her personal and political consciousness. Driven by an INFJ-A personality type labelled as ‘idealist’ by Carl Jung, her limitless 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 and other realities. At a time when there weren’t any Social Practice Art degrees in Spain, she specialised in Cultural Production with a MA from the Open University of Catalonia, to become a socio-politically engaged curator, writer and self-taught multidisciplinary artist, migrating to London after finishing her academic studies.
From challenging neocolonial / neoliberal products such as the art market, gentrification, and the anthropocene – including their hegemonic and intertwined oppressive social constructs such as nation, race, class, gender, sexuality, faith and disability- to embodying political and participatory arts, designing decolonial toolkits, and organising global networks, the intersectional scope of her practice and her multidisciplinarity have 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. These are projects and organisations using arts & culture as an individual and collective agency tool to challenge society at different levels of personal identity, decoloniality and community development such as HostelArt, Ribermusica and Interarts in Barcelona or Black Cultural Archives, Peckham Platform, Mahogany Carnival Arts and Haringey Arts in London to mention a few. Clients and collaborations include Extinction Rebellion (London), Africa Utopia (London), Labo Ethnik (Paris), Notting Hill Carnival (London), Fashion Revolution (Oslo), Plurality University Network (Paris), Antiuniversity Now (London), Social Art Network (UK), Ethno Tendance (Brussels), Klimafestivalen (Oslo), Brighton Pride Parade (Brighton), Utopian Studies Society (Global), Afropunk (Paris), and Center for Artistic Activism (New York) amongst many others.
Cristina is quadrilingual and has lived with, enjoys travelling to, and is forever learning from, different world cultures. Among her interest in critical human/natural sciences and arts at large, her core motivation is a profound awe for life in all its diversity, and expansive consciousness as a determinant of experience in its full potential. 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 visionary resources and experiences shaping alternative imaginaries and social poetics in the building of other presents and futures.
Featured image: Photography by Williamz Omope. Antiflag by Totem Taboo. London, 2017.