Juan Carlos Zaldivar

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SHIFT (5 minute video) pasword SHIFT, September 2012 Video (5 Minutes) Https://Vimeo.Com/37192816 Pasword Shift Variable © Phonograph Films LLC
SHIFTING NATURE, 2011 Laser Video Installation; Silent 8" H X 4" W X 14" L © Phonograph Films LLC
© Courtesy of the artist and BFI
Quick Facts
Lives in
Miami Beach
New York University (NYU), 97, MFA
New York University (NYU), 90, BFA
Representing galleries
Recently single (Bernice Steinbaum retired Aug 2012)
emmy, academy awards, Sundance, New York, 90 miles, shift, steinbaum, bernice, Art, video, film, films, phonograph, zaldivar, installation, video-art, performance, surrealism
Bio & Artist Statement


Cuban-born, Zaldívar lives and works in the United States. He completed both his BFA and a Masters of Fine Arts at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, where he has also taught as an adjunct faculty.

Zaldívar started his film career as a sound editor and designer, his work can be heard in Academy Nominated films such as Ang Lee's "Sense and Sensibility", in Nanette Burstein and Bret Morgan's "On the ropes" and on HBO's America Undercover, for which he garnered an Emmy nomination.

His film and video art works have been screened at many festivals worldwide and on PBS, ABC, IFC, Showtime and WE. He is the recipient of numerous grants and awards. His directing credits include "90 Miles" (PBS), "The Story of the Red Rose" (Showtime), "Palingenesis" and "Soldiers Pay," co-directed with David O. Russell (Three Kings) and Tricia Regan.

As programmer, Zaldívar co-founded and programmed The Florida Room, an event solely dedicated to social issue documentaries in Miami Beach for five years.  He also coordinated "Cutting the edge" at the Miami International Film Festival in its first two years, which showcased video art and films by artists working across disciplines.

He has served as a Juror for several mayor film festivals including the Sundance International Film Festival. He presently serves on the board of directors for NALIP (The National Association of Latino Independent Producers) and is a trustee for The Flaherty Film Seminar. He is a Sundance Film Institute Fellow. He teaches at Miami International University's Art Institute.


My film and visual art projects explore the transformation of physical form, and our perceptions of it. My work juxtaposes what is there vs. what appears to be there. I do this with light, sound and kinetics, which are what films are made of. I apply these notions to places and bodies as well. I love Butoh dance and film animation (both of which deconstruct movement and time, respectively). I like loose narratives.

I find the interaction of these elements often have fantastically exciting outcomes. I believe humor is often the best tool to communicate complex ideas and concepts.

I like chocolate cake.

Eastern philosophy and concepts are important to me.

I respect the defining properties of negative space and the invisible.

I have a Masters degree in film from NYU and an Emmy Nomination for sound.

I worked as a sound editor and designer for many years. I love sound. When I use it, it is an essential part of the work.

Some of my favorite artists include:


Bill Viola, Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Tacita Dean, Pavel Medvedev, Pipilotti Rist, Pawel Wojtasik and Nam June Paik


Janet Cardiff


James Turrell and Jim Campbell.


Marina Abramovic, Sankai Juku, Daniel Barrow