Justin Aversano, b. 1992, is an artist and curator based in New York, NY. Aversano studied at the School of Visual Arts in New York graduating in 2014 with a concentration in photography. Aversano has exhibited work in Brooklyn and Manhattan.
Aversano’s curatorial repertoire includes a number of shows with an emphasis on community at The Living Gallery, Bushwick Community Darkroom, Petite Gallery, Contra Gallery, and The Storefront Project. Aversano is the Co-Founder and Creative Director of Save Art Space and co-curates bi-monthly public art installations partnering with local and regional businesses to convert billboards and languishing spaces into works of art. Founded in 2015, Save Art Space enriches local communities through public beautification and fosters creative culture by giving artists the opportunity to use our platform to display their work.
“The Cactus Diaries” is Justin Aversano’s exploration into the Andean ceremonial culture of the healing properties of Huachuma between 2016 - 2018. The cactus is legend to be a heart-opening tool, used in sacred ceremonies with shamans, to connect deeper with oneself, nature, people, and all living things.
The medicine is an emotional psychedelic known as mescaline, although its major usage in this traditional culture is for healing the soul and enrichen one’s path through understanding, acceptance, and forgiveness. The mystic powers that the plant holds is older than we may know.
This series expresses that there is a dynamic parallel, between science, spirit, and alchemy, when photographing & printing shamanic experiences; by using alternative photography as a tool to express the psychedelic and spirituality of the mystical plant medicine.
20% of all sales will be donated to Lugar De Menores , a local charity orphanage in Cusco, Peru.