Clotilde Jiménez creates figurative collages on paper made from everyday materials (j-cloths, brown paper, kitchen towel) combined with found imagery gleaned from free magazines, and drawn or painted elements that center the queer black male body. The collages are to a greater or lesser extent, self-portraits that explore and trace his own identity, and how to represent himself in the face of the constraints and biases of Western Culture. The materials Jiménez focuses on using in his collages form a kind of subtext and have the potential to connect the personal nature of the works with more general political conditions. Jiménez’s work celebrates marginalized peoples while exploring the boundaries of race, gender, and sexuality as seen through his lens - a hybrid lens that is simultaneously Black, Hispanic, queer, and American male. Jiménez’s work poetically transcribes and reconstructs the societal idée fixe of the black body in popular culture. Through collage he deconstructs, as if performing
surgery, images of the body to reconstruct new images that accentuate his lived experience with gender and sexuality as well as his acute observations of the experiences of others. Although the experience behind Jiménez's work is subjective, there exists a level of symbolism that is universal that ultimately explores the boundaries of what it means to just be. Jiménez depicts powerful, overtly men in heels and voluptuous women, mostly, if not all, nude, engaged with or in reaction to masculinity. He plays with the boxer motif, which is a signifier of masculinity but by putting high heels on their feet, he questions the alleged masculinity that men are expected to perform at all times. His female characters are depicted as archetypically feminine including both he asexual “Mrs. Potato Head” to the ultra-feminine and ultra sexual women in “As Meninas”. All of Jimenez’s works raise seemingly disparate issues around playfulness, the performance of gender identity, and the intersection of identity hybridity and confusion and how these notions examined together create new bodies but also new bodies of knowledge.