Arlene Mejorado is a first-generation, transnational lens-based artist from Los Angeles, California working with analog and digital photography, video, and installations. In her practice she experiments with documentary forms, depicting truths that aren’t visibly represented or legible but are experienced viscerally. Through visual media, everyday materials, and repurposed documents, Mejorado engages in repair work, countering erasure and mending fragments in personal, collective, and diasporic stories and experiences. Themes within her interest are quotidian spectacles and pleasure, the construction of legacy in working class communities of color as well as culturally subversive spaces, performances, and collective gestures of catharsis and resistance.
Mejorado has been awarded the Magnum Foundation Photography and Social Justice fellowship, the DocX fellowship with the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University, the NALAC artist grant, and the Lucie Foundation Independent Book Award. Her photography has been published in Vogue, The Atlantic, California Sunday Magazine, Pop-Up Magazine, and the Los Angeles Times. Her practice extends into the archival space and she has worked on special projects with the Human Rights Documentation Initiative, The Latin American Benson Collection, and El Museo de la Palabra y la Imagen in San Salvador, El Salvador. She holds a B.A. in Latin American Studies from The University of Texas at Austin and is currently an M.F.A. candidate in Visual Arts at The University of California in San Diego.