History of Art


Sophie Halart


Sophie Halart completed her PhD in 2017. Her doctoral thesis investigated the production of Argentine and Chilean artists from the 1970s up to now. Examining the surface - both material and symbolical - of their works it articulated an "epidermal aesthetics", paying particular attention to the topos of skin as a site of resistance against political authoritarianism and gender determinism. Sophie is now an Assistant Professor in History of Art at the University Adolfo Ibañez (Chile) where her current research deals with maternity and materiality in Chilean contemporary art.  She is the co-editor of the book Sabotage Art: Politics and Iconoclasm in Contemporary Latin America (IB Tauris, 2016).


Epidermal Aesthetics: Skin and the Feminine in Argentine and Chilean Contemporary Art (1973-present)

Research Interests

Latin American Art History. Modern and Contemporary Art. Feminism and art in the context of the Southern Cone dictatorships with a particular focus on gendered readings of the body and skin. Materiality, Conceptual Art and Conceptualism(s). Maternity.


2019 (forthcoming). “Carne y hueso: las mil vidas del cuerpo en la obra de Carmen Beuchat”, Cuerpo y Visualidad. Archivo Carmen Beuchat. Santiago: Ediciones Metales Pesados. 

2018 (forthcoming). “Doubling the Odds: Pregnancy, Femininity and Embodiment in Nicola Costantino’s Trailer (2010)”, (Mary Edwards, ed.), The Double in Western Art, 1850-2010. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland.

2018. “Liliana Porter’s Wrinkle”, In Focus, Tate Research. http://www.tate.org.uk/research/publications/in-focus/wrinkle/wrinkles-in-time

2016. "Cogs and Clogs: Sabotage as Noise in post-1960s Chilean and Argentine Art and Art History", (Sophie Halart and Mara Polgovsky, eds.), Sabotage Art: Politics and Iconoclasm in Contemporary Latin America, New York - London: I.B. Tauris.

2014. “Conceptualism”, “Cuban Renaissance”, “Mexican Muralism”, “Arte Madí”, in Art in Time. A World History of Styles and Movements. London: Phaidon.

2014. "Precarious Matters: Conceptualism and Materiality in Chile and Argentina", Camila Maroja and Caroline Menezes (eds.), The Permanence of the Transient: Precariousness in Art. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publisher.

2014. "La Piel de las Cosas: Mutaciones Epidérmicas en la Pintura de Roser Bru", Soledad García (ed.) Tercer Concurso de Ensayos: Prácticas y discursos en las Artes Visuales de los '70 y '80 en Chile. Santiago: LOM Ediciones.

2014. "Eva-Argentina: Una Metáfora Contemporánea. Review of the Argentine Pavilion at the 55th Biennale de Venezia". Object (16).

2012. "El arte de performance en Chile: la herencia de la Escena de Avanzada y la nueva generación", Observatorio Cultural, Consejo Nacional de la Cultura y las Artes, Departamento de Estudios (May). 

Conference presentations (selected)

Mater chilensis: toward a maternal re-reading of the Chilean neo-avant-garde”, Decolonizing Third World Feminism: Latin American Women Artists (1960-1980), Haus der Kunst, Munich, 6 July 2018.

A Water of a Hundred Eyes: Reconfiguring liquidity in recent Chilean contemporary art”, Liquid Ecologies in the Arts pre-publication workshop, University of Barcelona, 22 May 2018.

A Water of a Hundred Eyes: Liquidity and Ecofeminism in Contemporary Chilean art”, Conference Eco-Imaginaries and the Borders of Art Practice from/in Latin America: migration, activism, and identity,  Cambridge University, 8 March 2018.

“Mater Chilensis. Accounting for the ‘Maternal Turn’ in Chilean contemporary art”, Panel: Between the Personal and Political: Women’s Self/Conscious Creative Practices in Latin America), LASA Annual Conference, Lima, Peru, 29 April – 1 May 2017.

“Las Altas Esferas de Liliana Maresca: (des-)vestir y (des-) bordar las imágenes del poder en la Argentina pos-dictatorial”, VI International Symposium of Aesthetics Estéticas del poder y contra-poder de la imagen en América, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, 19 – 21 October 2016.

“Fluides, flux, avant-garde: la symbolique du lait dans l’art contemporain chilien”, Conference Poétiques du Lait, University of Geneva, 7 – 8 June 2016. 

“Doubling the Odds: Pregnancy, Femininity and the Other in Nicola Costantino’s Trailer (2010)”, Panel: Two for One: Doppelgängers, Alter Egos, Reflected Images, and Other Duples in Western Art: 1900-2000, CAA Annual conference. New York, 11 – 14 February 2015.

“Sabo-tag# - Stories of conceptualism and materiality in Latin American contemporary art”. Symposium Sabotage: (Self-) Destructive Practices in Latin American Contemporary Art. University College London, 26 April 2013. 

“A Tactility of Dissent : Queer Artistic Interventions in Pinochet’s Chile”. Symposium What About the Gaze: Queer Lens and Visibility in Art History. Cornell University, 4 – 5 November 2011.

Conference/ Event Organizer

Panel Precarious Materialities and Artistic Production, co-organized with Mara Polgovsky, LASA Annual Conference, Puerto Rico, 27-30 May 2015.

Panel Making Do: Materiality in the Conceptual Age, co-organized with Mara Polgovsky, 40th AAH Annual Conference). Royal College of Art, London. 10-12 April 2014.

Symposium Sabotage: (Self-) Destructive Practices in Latin American Contemporary Art, co-organized with Mara Polgovsky, University College London, 26 April 2013.