In 1984, at eight years old, Guadalupe Maravilla immigrated alone to the United States from El Salvador in order to escape the Salvadoran Civil War. Maravilla was part of the first wave of undocumented unaccompanied children to come to the US from Central America. Maravilla became a US citizen at twenty-seven. In 2016, as a gesture of solidarity with his undocumented father, who uses Maravilla as his last name in his fake identity, Maravilla changed his birth name Irvin Morazan to Guadalupe Maravilla.
Maravilla creates fictionalized performances, videos, sculptures and drawings that incorporate his pre-colonial Central American ancestry, personal mythology, and autobiography. Through his multidisciplinary studio practice, Maravilla traces the history of his displacement, interrogates the parallels between pre-Columbian cultures and our border politics.
Guadalupe Maravilla has performed and presented his work extensively in venues such as the Whitney Museum of American Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, ICA Miami, Queens Museum, Bronx Museum, El Museo Del Barrio, MARTE (El Salvador), Central America Biennial X (Costa Rica), XI Nicaragua Biennial, Performa 11 & 13, Fuse-Box Festival, Exit Art, Smack Mellon, Rubin Foundation and the Drawing Center. Maravilla has upcoming solo projects at the ICA/VCU in Richmond Virginia, Jack Barrett Gallery in NY and a major performance at Knockdown Center in Spring 2020.
Awards and fellowships include; Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship 2019, Soros Fellowship: Art Migration and Public Space 2019, Map Fund Grant 2019, Creative Capital Grant 2016, Franklin Furnace 2018, Joan Mitchell Emerging Artist Grant 2016, Art Matters Grant 2013, Art Matters Fellowship 2017, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Fellowship 2018, Dedalus Foundation Grant 2013 and The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation Award 2003. Residencies include; LMCC Workspace, SOMA, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and Drawing Center Open Sessions.