Rosa Mar Tato Ortega makes art because she loves the process of embracing a topic, space or theme. Learning about a site or project, and immersion takes time. All her projects and art outcomes evolve in a way where the process is just as important as the final artwork. Subtle collaborations, impressions and triggers, the people she meets, and conversations are crucial to understanding her work.
While personal experience is at the centre of her sculpture practice, it is often through outward connections to community or site that her work unfolds. She consistently explores the tensions between material form and ephemeral light/shadow interplay and her work seamlessly crosses between the platforms of public art and personal professional practice.
Rosa has just completed a 12 month art residency at Coolart Wetlands. She exhibited works inside the Homestead and in the Minsmere Birdhide in May 2018 . In early November the residency culminated in a day where the public were encouraged to discover the artwork in and around the Coolart Homestead and Wetlands property.
In 2015, the Women's Art Register (WAR), as part of their 40 year celebrations of existence celebrating Women's Art, commissioned Rosa to revisit an artwork she created at the base of the North Melbourne Housing Tower, in 2012. The art work 'Embracing Distance' enabled the recent arrivals to reflect on their homeland, migration and settlement through a shared process of storytelling and group discussion.
She has been the recipient of several artist-in-residence grants; a research grant in Shanghai through RMIT School of Art and ECNU Shanghai, a funded residency in various locations around Menzies Shire in remote Western Australia, including a month at NGV Studio in 2012. Rosa was also the recipient of the Australia Council for the Arts’ ArtStart Grant.
In 2011, City of Melbourne funded an ambitious community engaged public sculpture project titled ‘Embracing Distance’. This permanent work is experienced as a 30m long decorative installation on site at the North Melbourne Public Housing Estate. It was recently nominated for the 2014 International Public Art Award (IAPA) and achieved recognition as a Semi-Finalist.
Rosa has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions nationally and internationally and has received important public, private and site-specific commissions in her home state of Victoria.
She was commissioned by BateSmart Architects to create a permanent public artwork at the entrance of the VIP Teak Room at Melbourne's Crown Casino.
Rosa, in between her own practice works as a Media Facilitator and VIP Liaison in the Arts.