Bromelias: oil on canvas.
I was born in the state of Minas Gerais in a small town named Rio Novo. Ever since I was a small child, I was familiar with paints and brushes, as my mother always enjoyed painting. As such, when I was 13--in 1971--I took a few classes with an Italian nun who worked at the school that I attended. After that, I never stopped again. I sold my first painting at age 15. I graduated in journalism from Federal University in the city of Juiz de Fora. This is a large city with approximately half a million inhabitants. Despite being an important industrial center it is also known as a center for regional culture where all the arts are valued. "When I was 25 I had my first exhibition of drawings (graphite) and paintings. One year later--in 1984--I had another individual exhibition this time with drawings only.
In 1985, my husband was assigned to work for 3 months at a town along the coast in southern Bahia state. We ended up being there for 13 years! In this place, a small fishing village named Caravelas, bromeliads grow in the sand under strong sunlight. While there I taught painting for 12 years. I also taught myself to sew during this time. In 1996, I did an individual exhibition of paintings (watercolor and oils) with the sea as the theme.
In 1998, we returned to Juiz de Fora. There I combined my sewing skills with my artistic vision and started a career in fashion design. I currently produce made-to-order accessories and bridal costumes on exclusive basis. Recently, I began teaching painting again-holding oil on canvas classes once a week.
I have always admired Impressionist painting. I used to try painting that way but I ended up including too many details, using thin brushes, and escaping from the style. Because of that, I decided to let my hands "do whatever they wanted", and they led me to the Realist style. Now, I am very happy with the choice.
Regarding bromeliads as subjects, while flipping through a magazine, I saw a beautiful Orthophytum burle-marxii, and decided to paint it. I wrote to the photographer, Araquem Alcantara, a great photographer of Brazilian nature. He approved my idea, and authorized me to use his picture as model. When I finished that painting, I started to look for other bromeliads through the Internet and I also took my own pictures. After a little over two years, I feel that now is the right time to show the results of all my efforts. I would like to highlight that BSI's website was a great source for my research and the amazing support you all gave me was also extremely helpful. I also must mention Mr. Elton Leme, the renowned researcher and taxonomist from Brazil, who offered me important information on the theme.
Marcia Valle Ribeiro de Oliveira (1). Illustrations by the author.
(1) Juiz de Fora-MG, Brasil, firstname.lastname@example.org
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|Author:||de Oliveira, Marcia Valle Ribeiro|
|Publication:||Journal of the Bromeliad Society|
|Date:||Jul 1, 2009|
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