Jersey City
Jacqueline Arias

Jacqueline Arias is an artist, independent filmmaker, and educator born in Alajuela, Costa Rica and raised in rural Ohio. This varied geographical and cultural history has inspired a body of work that addresses ideas of heritage, race, and socially constructed identities.

Jacqueline studied photography at Parsons School of Design, experimenting with photography, video art and performance work. Her work addresses the invisible social barriers in our society and the feelings of cultural detachment they cause.

Jacqueline’s experiments in photography and video led to directing and producing a feature length documentary film, entitled Imaginary Mothers. This film addresses issues about women’s rights, unfair class structures and wide spread corruption in international adoption. Imaginary Mothers was screened at the 2017 Golden Door International Film Festival.

Jacqueline is the founder of the Jersey Art Exchange, a nonprofit arts education program for disadvantaged youth.

Unseen Trajectories: Costa Rica / Panama Families 
Jacqueline Arias
mixed media
28 x 36 in.


Unseen Trajectories uses google earth elevation charts to explore the physicality international adoptees experience moving from country to country. By tracing the distance and calculating the length and depth one can begin to see the breadth of separation between families.

The visualization’s depiction of time and depth is symbolic of an emotional and psychological disruption not seen in a traditional map. The elevation drawings measure the space between birth mother and child; and holds the weight of loss felt by birth mothers and families – the broken bonds. This work gives form and shape to the unspoken invisible emptiness caused by separation.