Chalet Comellas (1971 she/her) was born in Tampa, FL and lives and works in Nashville, TN. Her expanded media practice seeks to engage viewers through generative frameworks, visually and sonically. Employing painting, sculpture, video, sound, site-specific projects, and various extensions of technology, Comellas’ conceptual works reflect on methods of abstraction and her personal connection to the complex histories surrounding the Latin Diaspora. Her energetic and software assisted compositions both highlight and raise questions about our contemporary relationship to non-human systems.
Her solo exhibitions include Moving in Spatial Limbo, <Terminal> Gallery, TN (2021); Dancing at Intersections, Atrium Videos, PA (2021); Working Memory, Wolpert Gallery at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, TN (2016) among others. Her work has been included in several group exhibitions at museums including, the Tampa Museum of Art, Tampa, FL; Brevard Museum of Art, Melbourne, FL; Albany Museum of Art, Albany GA; and the Boca Raton Museum of Art, Boca Raton, FL. As both an individual and a collaborating artist, Comellas has shown work at numerous galleries and art centers including, Elephant Gallery, Nashville, TN; Terrain Biennial 2021, Oak Park, IL; MOCAN, Nashville, TN; Laundromat Art Space, Miami, FL; LABSpace, Hillsdale, NY; Goodyear Arts, Charlotte, NC; Tempus Projects, Tampa, FL; Phylogeny Contemporary, Seattle, WA; EYEDRUM, Atlanta, GA; Flashpoint Gallery, Washington D.C.; Grace Exhibition Space, Brooklyn, NY; Shoebox Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; and in a solo project space at Fountain Art Fair, Miami, FL (2011 and 2012). Her nomadic collaborative project, Assembly is Required was exhibited in Louisiana, as part of P.S. Satellites: A Project of Prospect 4 New Orleans. Printed materials from this project have been included in several regional group exhibitions and shown internationally at the Toronto Art Book Fair. Comellas’ experimental films have been juried into several festivals including Heroic Couplets with Kindling Arts + Defy Film Festival, InLight Richmond in Richmond, VA and the Miami New Media Festival, which traveled to Caracas, Venezuela; Cerdeña, Italy; Oranjestad, Aruba; Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Comellas is the recipient of numerous awards including, top prize in the Digital Media Category at ArtFields 2018, Visiting Artist-in-Residence at Vanderbilt University, and as an Assistant Professor, she was awarded Faculty in Residence at the Facility for Arts Research at Florida State University. Her work is several collections including, Soho House Nashville, Nashville, TN; Vanderbilt University Library, Nashville TN; Colorado College Special Collections Library, Colorado Springs, CO; Tampa General Hospital, Tampa, FL; City of Tampa Public Art, Tampa, FL.
Comellas has experience teaching classes and workshops at a variety of levels and has taught studio arts classes on 2D composition, time-based media, and lecture based critical writing courses focused on contemporary art and the environment. She has worked with several academic collaborators over the years and is a founding member of Analog Analogue, an artist collective based in North Florida. In 2013, she gave a public talk on their collective works for TEDxFSU.
Comellas currently co-runs Unrequited Leisure, an artist-run curatorial project space founded in 2019 with her artistic collaborator, Clinton Sleeper. Within UL’s programing they identify the significance of plurality and seek to amplify diverse voices from the region and beyond. Artists selected explore screen-based approaches to critical and topical investigations through video, code, and net-based art. Since opening, more than ninety percent of the artists they support are from historically underrepresented populations in contemporary art, and more than fifty percent are international artists, born outside of the United States. In addition to gallery programming, Comellas and Sleeper host the Especially Flat File, JPEGS.space, and an Experimental Film Series called Adjusting the Lens, bringing together film and video artists through a thematic curatorial framework.