13 September 2021

Codifying a Multifaceted Identity

13 September 2021 - Written by PhMuseum

Taking her polyhedric origins as a starting point for her work and then re-interpreting them through a series of staged photographs, Chantal Lesley escapes the rigid labels of culture and representation in search of a fluid symbology of the future.

En Medio de la Nostalgia is an art series that explores identity, multiculturalism, and Mexican-American border issues. As a half German half Peruvian woman who grew up in Brownsville (TX) feeling stretched between four cultures has led to a strong interest in issues of identity in my photographic work. This body of work explores the similarities and differences between my four cultures (German, Peruvian, Mexican, American) through research, the exploration of creating photographs, and the use of symbolism related to each culture combining them to find new meaning that represents my experience. Through still lifes, portraiture, and archives I explore the history of my family throughout several generations.

Words and Pictures by Chantal Lesley.


Chantal Lesley is a conceptual photographer who uses images to discover her identity, multiculturalism and to understand the world around her. As a half-German half-Peruvian woman who grew up on a Mexican-American border town, feeling stretched between four cultures has led to a strong interest in issues of identity, and she regains power and agency by turning the colonial gaze upon itself. Find her on PHmuseum and Instagram.


This feature is part of Story of the Week, a selection of relevant projects from our community handpicked by the PHmuseum curators.

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2 minutes