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January 10 , 2010

My Three Lives

In Argentina, USA and France


This book did not start as a book. It started as a sketchbook from THE SKETCHBOOK PROJECT 2011, for the Brooklyn Art Library in New York. To participate in the project, I had to complete and mail the sketchbook by January 15, 2011. It was November 2010. My topic was: “Outside-Inside”, and I could do anything I wanted with it. So I decided to paint the story of my life.
I planned the paintings carefully, according to the period of my life, deciding to do the first part, farther away in time, in watercolor, due to the softness of its hue. The second and third parts I did in acrylics, brighter colors provided more immediacy. I also decided to give the second part a shift, painting and writing diagonally on the pages, to emphasize the mental shift my family had to go through when we started our new life in the USA. I researched old family photos, letters, documents, my life journals, my mother's poems, and I painted day and night for several weeks. Each painting is symbolic in that it represents not only a geographical place or feature in Argentina, California, or France, but also my feelings during that period of my life. All the hand-writing was done in ink, with an old fashioned “plume”, like the ones I used at school in Argentina. The first part I just had to write in Spanish, then translating it all to English. The third part has some phrases in French which are also translated to English. My mother's poem: “Primavera”, about the Spring of life, I did not translate.
When I held the finished sketchbook in my hands, a few days before the mailing date, I did not want to part with it. I had invested so much of my heart and soul in it, and so many hours of my painting life on it, I didn't know what to do. Finally, I scanned the sketchbook, and mailed the original, keeping the digital version. My original sketchbook is touring Art museums and galleries throughout the United States in 2011, and will become part of the permanent collection of the Brooklyn Art Library in New York, at the end of the year 2011. The scanned version became this book.
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