Installation bamboo chair, velvet, clay roses,soil

The Neuberger Museum

A baby wicker chair, covered with extremely delicate ceramic roses each with a oversized, thorn-like stem, all red, placed atop a pedestal which is covered with blood-red velvet, then surrounded by a circle of dirt and more roses. as such it is one final attempt to protect the child from what she may perceive as a predestined fate.

Dominick Lombardi

New Art Examiner

Esperanza Cortes’s Multipart work “Altar to those Forgotten”, is a heap of unglazed clay roses along with exaggerated long thorns on a table put in front of an abstract painting. If viewers are literal minded, they can read its evanescent imagery as ascending souls, perhaps spirits of Wave Hill.

William Zimmer

The New York Times

Esperanza Cortes works in two and three dimensions with encaustic and fresco, expressing her interest in religion, nature and feminism and embellishing her pieces with clay, flowers, jewelry and fabric.


The New york Times

altar to those forgotten 

Installation, encaustic painting on wood, table, clay, 11’H x 4’W x 2’D


Riverdale, New York


Installation, brocade, clay roses, 7’ x 7’

The Neuberger Museum, Purchase, New York 

The delicacy and subtlety of Cortés's work is especially apparent in Piso, consisting of a length of brocade extending from the wall down to and out onto the floor. The floor covering is qualified by a heap of clay flowers. Simultaneously formal and feminine, the piece entails a simple plane of fabric enhanced by multiple forms.

Judy Colishan PHD

Charm Bracelet 

Frescoes, glass beads, chains, metals  60”  x  12”

Works like Charm Bracelet, a wall piece made of frescos, roses, charms, and glass beads, addresses with agonizingly blunt imagery one seemingly un-resolvable pattern common to many abusive relationships. The four painted images: lacerated pelvic area, a bruised mouth, a blood-stained and bruised eye socket, and a nipple contusion, are each flanked by decorative charms. Clearly, the trinkets are given to make the hurt go away; unfortunately, they come from the same source as the pain. The chain—the bracelet minus its adornments—symbolizes the oppression in her life.

Dominick LombardI
New Art Examiner

Longwood’s “stand” includes installations that could pass for theater sets, notably Esperanza Cortes’s “The Wedding Suite”, where the bed is giant box covered with white damask and the curtains are made of fleshy-looking beads and flowers.

Vivien Raynor

The New York Times

The Wedding Suite   

Installation - miniature paintings, brocade, lame, pearls, crystal, clay beads, mirror, wood

8’ H x  8’ Dx 16’ W 

Bronx Museum of the Arts

New York


A Charmed Life 

2009 - 2013

frescoes, chair, brocade, glass beads, alabaster beads, chains

7’ x 7’ x 4’

Taller PuertoriqueÑo

Philadelphia, PA

The installation considers the physical/social/spiritual sacrifices made to conform. Bruises, lacerations, contusions, stand for the abuses imposed by self and others and question the lengths traversed to attain our desires and the desires themselves.


2008  Clay, string 80” x 80”

Nature is possibly the most formidable component of Cortes’s work. A rhythm set up by repetition, slight irregularities and gathering of forms relates her sculpture to flower beds, clustered seeds or stem of leaves.

Judy Collischan PH.D

A Flor De Piel  

Installation, clay, fresco on marble, salt,  8’ H x 8’ L x 8’W

the bertha and Karl Leubsdorf art Gallery

New York

grave to the unknown woman

Outdoor sculpture

wood, metal, glass,13’ x 2’

Socrates sculpture Park


In my travels though Europe and north africa. I noticed in every town the grave to the unknown soldier. I thought that part of the story of our history was missing. Women who fought and continues to fight throughout the world for freedom, although they do not wear uniforms or receive medals.

a collection of amulets and trinkets, some found, others created epitomize the power with which belief is imbued. suspended and affixed, belief serves to protect and progress our lives and shield us from the inevitability and proximity of death. 

Suspended Thoughts

1999 - 2012  Frescoes

beaded clay sculptures, glass beads, chains clay,wood, glass

13’ x 31/2’  dia.

Esperanza Cortes’s labor -intensive Sculptures are based on chains stitched from tiny glass beads. One piece, suspended From the ceiling and hung with handmade amulets and charms, has a dense but attenuated presence.

Holland Cotter

The New York Times

I was originally inspired to become an artist by the “Houses of Worship” I attended as a child. These “Churches” were total environments: architecture, lighting, incense, painted and sculpted images were all combined to create a sense of awe in the viewer. My works are metaphors of experience. I use the human body as a symbol of nature, vulnerability and power.