Born in Madrid, Spain in 1982, Andrea Santolaya’s photographic language portrays the life of small communities where timelessness as a social bond stands out. Santolaya’s work creates a dialogue with the viewer to show the intimacy of the places, the characters that inhabit it, the history and how society debates in its natural environment over time. Her subjects include the Mikhailovsky Ballet of Saint Petersburg, in Russia; the Warao etnic group of Orinoco river Delta, in Venezuela; the world of boxing in gyms in New York, United States; and the centennial Biarritz Olympique rugby team, in France among others.
Santolaya received an MFA from the School of Visual Arts in New York with a scholarship granted by Oba Social La Caixa. While at SVA, she worked for Manolo Valdés, photographing the artist’s monumental sculptures in New York City.
She is the author of several books including Around, published by La Oficina and Manolo Valdés: The New York Botanical Garden, edited by La Fabric which won the First Prize for the best 2014 art publication by the Ministry of Culture and Sports of Spain. Her work has been published by national and international media, including El Paris, El Mundo, Metador Magazine, Esquire, El Nacional and Smithsonian Journeys.
Her first solo exhibition, Around about women boxers was held at Marlborough Gallery in Madrid as part of the Festival of Photospaña 2011. Since then, her work has been presented at international institutions and galleries that include Centro Conde Duque in Madrid, Palau de la Música de Valencia, Mondo Galeria, Galeria Freites of Caracas, Institut Français in Madrid and the International Photography Festival of Mérignac.