Born in 1959, in the Basque Country, Clara Probanza Arrizabalaga began to shape the material of her dreams, after the emergence of a serious illness that transformed her life and forced her to spend most of her time lying in bed or on a couch.
In order to ease the pain she felt, in 2008, in the company of her sister, a well-known illustrator, she started to build a small world of extraordinary three-dimensional beings made of cotton fabric, forging what they both called “couch art”. Subsequently, the fantastic and colorful universe that populated his mind passed to paper, through drawings where she expressed the infinite possibilities that the world has to offer.
Discovered by Cruzes Canhoto in 2017, she becomes part of all the collective shows held by the gallery from then on. On December 1, 2020, she presents her first solo exhibition at Cruzes Canhoto, entitled “Azal Berritzea” (skin renewal, in Basque).
The characters with multiple heads but one arm, the animals with a thousand eyes and the women with bird’s paws, initially drawn with some naïvité, remain in these new drawings, only that they now appear in more detail and with a more precise line, integrated in a complex web of new patterns and diverse figurations. They are abysmal but charming beings that give us life lessons for the times that are going on, from a couch in the Basque Country.