Burlington City Arts

Estefania Puerta: Sore Mouth Swore

February 21, 2020 - September 26, 2020

Open Wednesday-Saturday, 12-5 pm

Estefania Puerta is an artist who insists on traversing different media to create art that goes beyond the convention of any one genre. Identifying as an immigrant Latina woman, Puerta is deeply connected to displacement and a sense of body that doesn’t quite fit anywhere.

The sculptures in Sore Mouth Swore are infused with an emotional and psychological presence. These materially dense works defy boundaries; they are textural and untidy, seemingly natural yet uncomfortably foreign. Activated by the viewer’s presence, each sculpture becomes a distinct character. Often, aspects of the body (a tongue, hair, or bones) emerge from the form, suggesting disembodied parts seeking a whole.

Utilizing Sore Mouth Swore’s poetic alliteration, Puerta reveals the challenging act of pronouncing these words in succession. Whether to swear as an insult, or swear as a promise, she is drawn to the duality and uncertainty of language. Evolving from spoken to visual expressions of this theme, Puerta examines the ambiguity within meaning—playing with notions of materials, identity, and transformation.

BCA Exhibitions are funded in part by a grant from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual ArtsNational Endowment for the Arts, and Vermont Arts Council.

Please review our full list of guidelines and protocols for protecting our community while visiting the BCA Center.



Take a 360-degree tour of the exhibition.


Preview and purchase Estefania's: Sore Mouth Swore zine.

Pictured: How to Trap a Woman, Chapter 5, Estefania Puerta, 2017