Eliza O. Barrios

Contemporary Filipino American Art Exhibition




Eliza O. Barrios is a San Francisco-based visual artist whose work encompasses both individual and collaborative practices. In her solo work, Barrios explores the relationship between physical space, memory and the impermanence of lived experience, using digital media to orchestrate site specific installations and projections. Her collaborative practice includes performance, video and photography engaging with concepts of gender and culture (with M.O.B./Mail Order Brides), and public interventions addressing current social and political issues (with Paz de la Calzada).  

Barrios holds a Bachelor of Arts from San Francisco State University and a Masters of Fine Arts from Mills College. Her solo and collaborative work has shown domestically and internationally in museums, galleries, public spaces and theaters including  the Museum of Contemporary Art (Oahu, Hawaii), Manila Biennale: Open City 2018 (Manila, Philippines), MCLA Gallery 51, (North Adams, MA), New Forms Festival (Vancouver, Canada), Tenderloin District (San Francisco, CA), Soho (New York) and the International Turin Gay & Lesbian Film Festival (Turin, Italy). 

She has received an Honorary Fellowship from the Djerassi Resident Artists Program and has served as Juror for Alliance of Artists Communities' Visions From New California Fellowship. 



Make Do: part one 
Acrylic photo prints (16 @ 8”x8”) 

Pinay, from the Make Do series 

Handle with Care, from the Make Do series 

Make Do: part one is a series of images documenting the gadgetry my mother engineered to fix and/or beautify our home. After my mother’s passing, I captured the house as she left it.  My childhood home symbolized the legacy of my family’s success having immigrated from the Philippines in 1963: 44 years, four generations and a life well lived. As a child I was always slightly embarrassed around mom’s crafty DIY home decor style. She juxtaposed pins, zip ties and tape with ribbons and Princess House wall treatments. She repurposed broken fixtures to prop up photos, or support shelving that did not quite fit in a corner. Coming back as an adult, I began to marvel at mom’s ingenuity. Her fervent need to be creative was evident throughout the house.  She had an uncanny ability to see beyond the intended use of an object and resurrect it elsewhere, extending its life. From a make-shift “basket” to a foot-rest using medicine bottle caps and curtain rods, she created contraptions to satisfy her exact needs. The objects range from decorative to functional, all metaphors of how she took control of and managed her experience transitioning to the States and 'making do’.