Maria Sécio

Maria Sécio (b.1994) is a Portuguese artist, currently based in Berlin. Sécio has studied in the art school António Arroio (Portugal) and Film-Production at Arts University Bournemouth (UK). However, she ended up graduating with a Bachelor in Fine Art Photography.

The development of her unique artistic language begun after her residencies in Japan at Studio Kura (Itoshima) and in Greece at Tryfon Arts Residency (Lesbos).

She has exhibited her works at group exhibitions in Berlin, and her works have been published in numerous magazines in Milan, Berlin and Lisbon. In 2020 Sécio had her the first solo show “The Calm Before” at Mina Gallery in Amsterdam.

Maria Sécio is the founder of the artist collective <3 (Below Three), which is a four-member group of painters and photographers based in Berlin. Their initiative behind this union is to invite time-based arts and 2D visual arts to coexist in the same space.

With her project River Gurara, she won the first prize – “Novos Talentos FNAC 2020” – in the photography category (Portugal).

It sounds paradoxical to associate the images I create with constructed scenery when I refuse to stage a moment fully. I create fictional atmospheres with the reality that surrounds me. The truth within the frame comes from deconstructing the moments into a new abstract narrative. The subjects – models are stripped from themselves, allowing me to alter their nature into my own.

The new characters often address my emotions as I subconsciously incline my work on exploring my fears and lost memories.

I only photograph with analogue film, and the practice is often cyclic. It provides me with the necessary endless stages for editing. I capture the image, with ‘technically wrong’ settings. That allows me to have a broader choice of movement in the frame. After having the negatives developed, I proceed to decompose them with acidic substances manually. The image is often only complete after a back and forth – manual and digital editing with sometimes more than one image becoming a single piece.