Claudia Pretelin, New York City, 2016. © Image by Bryan Murray


Welcome to Instruments of Memory. I’m Claudia Pretelin. I’m a Mexican art historian, independent researcher, and arts administrator based in Los Angeles, California. This site is my long-term art history documentation project. It has evolved with time and I find myself now focusing on personal interviews with women in the arts. I ask about their work, their interests, and future projects. If this intrigues you I encourage you to check in on occasion and maybe even take a dive into the archives.


Check out this conversation with Aneesa Shami an artist and researcher based in Los Angeles who uses recycled materials to create fiber art. For this interview, I visited Shami’s studio remotely to talk about her recent projects. I asked what it is like to adjust as an artist and an entrepreneur during the Coronavirus crisis. In addition to this interview, don’t miss Shami’s takeover for the Instruments of Memory Instagram account!


A conversation with Long Island-based activist, artist, and filmmaker Mara Ahmed. In conjunction with her production company Neelum Films, Mara has written and directed three documentaries The Muslims I Know, Pakistan One on One, and A Thin Wall. She is currently working on The Injured Body, a documentary about racism in America, focusing exclusively on the voices of women of color. Mara’s artwork is described by the artist as a multimedia fusion of collage work, photography, graphic art, and film work and it has been exhibited at galleries in New York and California.

Mara Ahmed. © Image by Annette Ramos