Madrid.1987. Irene is a photographer, director of photography and video artist. She has been living and working in Berlin since 2013. After graduating from the Complutense University of Madrid with a double degree in Advertising and Public Relations, and Audiovisual Communication, she then completed an international master's degree EFTI (International School of Photography and Cinema), specializing in Conceptual Photography and Artistic Creation. Following, she the pursued, thanks to a scholarship, a specialized course on cinematic narrative lighting (direction of cinematography).
Light is, in fact, a significant element of Irene Cruz's work, leading her to explore and experiment with it mostly in northern European countries.
She has already had more than 500 exhibitions of photography, video art and video installations around the world (highlighting places such as the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, the circle of BBAA, IFEMA, CEART or the Palace of Cibeles in Madrid, KunstHalle or the Deutsche Oper in Berlin, Project Art Space in New York, the MUA of Alicante or the Da2 of Salamanca). She has also participated in various fairs such as ARCO or Art Madrid, Positions (Berlin), Art Basel, Photo Basel, etc. She has been the image of various photography festivals (such as La Quatrieme Image in Paris, Bilboargazki in Bilbao, Revela't in Barcelona or Segoviafoto).
Irene has won severral important awards such as the Banco Santander Foundation's Photo-Detail Accesit in 2010, the second AENA Foundation Photography Award, the first prize at the II CFC-Iberdrola Photography Competition in 2014, and the 2014 Videoarte Best Piece Award by the international platform Elmur.net. She recently won a scholarship to make a large individual exhibition (RGB) in Madrid at CEART Museum (Room B).
Among her mentors we count Isabel Muñoz (she was her assistant in 2018 / 2019 on her trips to Japan). Eduardo Rodríguez Merchán (Professor of the UCM) and Venancio Blanco (Artist, Sculptor).
Alongside her own work, Cruz is passionate about teaching workshops and seminars (in person and online) in specialized schools and universities in Mexico, Switzerland, Spain, UK and Germany: at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, the UAL of London, the University of Darmstadt, and the Freie University of Berlin among others.
Since 2012, Irene has consecutively participated in the Photoespaña festival in various galleries and centers. She was also awarded the Emerging Artist Award with the most international projection by Why on White's specialized jury (in 2015), made up by some of the most important gallerists and cultural managers of the time.
She has collaborated with several brands: Canon (UK & Spain), Saal Digital, Lomography & Hahnemühle among others.
Irene Cruz’s artworks are also part of some important national and international collections (among which are the Venancio Blanco Foundation, the House of America, Fotofever Paris or the ENAIRE Foundation).
She combines her career in contemporary art with teaching and her work as director of photography and colorist. As Director of Photography she has worked on two feature films "Diana" (Fiction, Alejo Moreno, 101 min, 2018) and "Proven Facts" (3-chapter series of 60 min c/u+ 1 feature film, 2021) as well as made several music videos, advertising campaigns (the last one she directed and shot in its entirety for Levis, both graphic and audiovisuals), video art pieces (highlighting her work in the Deutsche Oper 2014-2016) and short documentaries... She is currently shooting a fiction film: "Janine zieht aufs Land" (TBD, 2022, Dir: Jan Eilhardt) and "Nicht Fertig" a feature documentary on the life and work of the German painter Werner Hilsing.
In 2018 she joined CIMA (the Association of Women Filmmakers and Audiovisual Media in Spain) and since December 2019 she has been part of the national association AEC (Spanish Association of Directors of Photography). . At European level EWA (European Women Audiovisual Network). Furthermore in Berlin she takes part of the Stammtisch Women in Cinema Berlin organization as well as active member of The Women+ Film Network Berlin.
She works independently, not exclusively with any producer. Since April 2019 she has been represented nationally by Reno Films and in Germany by AIMEND. She often collaborates with Wild Tulip Productions and Realfilm Berlin GmbH.
Irene Cruz is a DOP photographer and video artist. She is fully engaged in photography in various fields: video art, film, as well as teaching. Her works have been presented at festivals as well as individual and group fairs or exhibitions around the world, such as the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, the Circle of Fine Arts or the Palace of Cibeles in Madrid, La KunstHalle or Tempelhof in Berlin, Project Art Space in New York, the MUA3 in Alicante or the Da2 4 de Salamanca.
She currently resides in Berlin, where she takes advantage of the proximity to nature and northern light to incorporate them into her works.
She studied Advertising and PR, and Audiovisual Communication (UCM, Madrid, 2010). She then completed the international master's degree EFTI, (Conceptual Photography and Artistic Creation, 2011). Then in 2013, she took a specialized course on cinematic narrative lighting at the same center.
She has won awards such as the Banco Santander Foundation's Photo-Detail Accesit in 2010, the 2nd AENA Foundation Photography Award, the first prize at the II CFC-Iberdrola Photography Competition in 2014, and the 2014 Videoarte Best Piece Award by the international platform Elmur.net. He has participated in the Photoespaña festival uninterruptedly since 2012 in various galleries and centers.
She combines her career in contemporary art, with teaching (at various specialized universities and schools in Mexico, Spain, UK, Germany and Switzerland) and her work as director of photography and colorist.
As DOP two feature films "Diana" (Fiction, Alejo Moreno, 2018) and "Proven Facts" (TBD, 2020) can be highlighted although she has also made video clips, campaigns (the last one she has directed for Levi's), pieces of video art (highlighting her work at the Deutsche Oper 2014-2016), short documentaries...
Since 2019 she has been part of the AEC (Spanish Association of Directors and Directors of Photography) and CIMA since 2018 (Association of Women Filmmakers and Audiovisual Media). In Berlin she is part of the stammtisch Women in Cinema Berlin organization as well as an active member of The Women+ Film Network Berlin.
My work manifests mystery, intimacy. It declares the human being as part of nature and attests to its integration into the landscape.... The landscape that can be seen in my images always has an emotional role. I am interested in working away from personalization, close to representing universal emotions and feelings, hence the absence of faces in general.
Photography is for me it's a native language. From a very young age I communicate through it as my personal connection to the environment. I understand art as a quest, a therapy and a tool that leads me to constant spiritual and professional transformation. My work is always a mirror of my inner universe, of my position in front of the world, and a reflection of what I have to live in every moment of my life.
The most distinctive feature of my work is light. I look for the limits of dusk and dawn, my light is blue, cold. I have always felt a great attraction for the dim and intimate, subtle, serene lighting that surrounds the stage. I create from the "liminal" (from both sides of a border or threshold); I mean, being between day and night, tranquility and restlessness. I move and explore the place that exists between the different polarities because for me there are no limits. There are roads, bridges... And in the end: Nature always wins, it's everything.
About Irene Cruz's artworks
Irene Cruz creates her artworks using natural elements and blue lights. Most of her photographs and videos are depersonalised portraits interacting with nature. She photographs feature a cinematographic atmosphere, and combine fiction with reality, rendering her work highly recognizable.
Influenced by cinematographers as Emmanuel Lubezki, Lance Acord and Christopher Doyle, Irene Cruz’s ephemeral yet exquisitely crafted works have a natural elegance that brings us back to the German Romanticism paintings and imaginary. She engulfs us in her universe and makes us part her work, feeling like voyeurs of the way she perceives the landscapes.
Irene Cruz (Madrid, 1987) is an artist who is gaining a remarkable personality, with a very recognisable style for everyone nowadays. It is difficult not to be seduced by her pictures, especially by the aura of mystery and poetry inside their atmospheres, with a cinematographic environment, but also by the fact that she knows how to articulate what at first glance could seem opposite to us; fiction and reality, nature and human presence.
Nati Guil Grund.
VGallery Chef Curator