The exhibition includes two of Güell’s key works: Humanitarian Aid (2008-13) and Stateless by Choice (2015-16). The former documents an exchange of services, with Güell offering herself in marriage to anyone wanting to emigrate from Cuba to Spain. The latter considers the historical roots of nationalism, with Güell engaging in a legal process, informed by self-determination ideologies, to challenge her national identity.
In her practice Güell addresses issues of legality, power, ethics, and morality. She employs tactics associated with activism, regularly using her persona as subject matter or collaborating with people in a variety of contexts. Her works challenge, and often subvert, the political status quo, mainstream lifestyles, gender divisions, and dominant economies.
Güell lives and works in Barcelona. She graduated from the University of Barcelona and continued her studies under Tania Bruguera at the Cátedra Arte de Conducta in Cuba. She exhibits regularly across the globe; recent highlights include a solo show at Project Arts Centre in Dublin (2016) and participation in the Kyiv Biennial (2015), the Athens Biennial (2013), and the Göteborg Biennial (2013).
This exhibition is supported by Acción Cultural Española. ¡VAMOS! is a festival based in Newcastle that celebrates Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking cultures. This the fifth year Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art has collaborated with ¡VAMOS! in the organisation of a project.