HOW I STARTED...
My mother and grandmother were constantly creating. They would sew clothes and pillows, make ceramics, paint and more. My grandmother taught me how to hand sew, cross-stitch and work with clay and molds. They'd often take me in -what seemed like adventures, in search for new materials for their creative projects.
I still remember the first time I visited a fabric bazaar with them, It left quite an impression on me.
This was during the late 70's in Puerto Rico. Retro patterns, African, Indian and tropical motifs had been all the rage. Geometrics and block color combinations were starting to trend. I wandered off and got lost within a sea of materials. There were hundreds of colorful bolts on display, covering every wall from top to bottom. Traditional Chintz, Moirés, gorgeous velvets, and funky prints on tables and in baskets. It was overwhelming and beautiful. I wanted to stay there forever. After that experience, I started collecting my grandmother's leftover fabric scraps in a little box. I'd spend hours admiring their colors, patterns and textures.
Later, in college, I decided to pursue my passion for textiles and combine it with design and photography-this last one was instilled by my father through his scientific curiosity for time perception and memory.
Any material that bends like fabric inspires me to design and create. I like to repurpose discarded ones for obvious environmental reasons. One example is vinyl, It's very difficult to find a recycling center for it and its artificial texture and sheen gives it a "Kitsch" look and meaning (which amuses me, I like using a little bit of whimsy and irreverence, even when approaching serious topics). I layer it, sew it and tend to pair it with linen, cotton or soft fabrics as a way to highlight the contradiction between natural and manmade.
Raw texture, deconstruction and spontaneity (in method + resulting organic shapes) and repetition (in action + visual patterns) are elements commonly found in all my works with textiles. Even so, the tone of each piece and my intentions vary. I can explore pure abstract form to themes like superstition, chance or more personal ones, like the mix of cultures, connection between language, identity, sense of otherness and displacement. I like to let the materials and the moment guide me in the creative process.
Selected fiber artworks and mixed media:
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