We had the good fortune of connecting with Marianela de la Hoz and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Marianela, what role has risk played in your life or career?
I had always wanted to be an artist but after finishing High school, I surrendered to external pressures and chose instead to be a Graphic Designer, which was a fine job which made good money. I devoted my time to the book design industry and I did many illustrations. And yet, I was not happy, something was missing. When my second child was born and I had to stay at home to take care of him, something inside told me that it was the right time to pursue my dream,. Like a blind person, stumbling and fearful, I tried to experiment with everything I found in my way, techniques and materials I had used in my Graphic Design upbringing. I hid myself to work on my first painting; I worked when nobody was looking, keeping the work beneath my bed. It took a year to finish my first painting. I had decided that if this experiment did not satisfy my exigent opinion I would have to return to the anonymity of my work as a graphic designer. Finally, when the paint was finished, I realized that my life had been changed for ever and from that day on I have never left the brushes and colors, feeling the passion and commitment to my life companion: art That happened 28 years ago. Many things have happened, I feel so privileged to be able to continue to create and share my work
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
From knowing so much and yet so little through my painting today I know why I paint what I paint, I translate into images as I do, I dress as I dress, I behave as I behave and I have a unique and particular perception of my own body. I’m my past and present, I don’t know anything about the future beyond the blunt fact that death awaits me. The magic of art is that what seems to be an individualistic vision of reality, it touches and reaches the observer who in turn observes and interacts with what I paint. It is a collective unconscious exercise For each observer who approaches a painting, each will be a different one depending on his or her background and sensitivity. I have been fortunate to witness the reactions that my work can inspire, ranging from rejection, disgust, emotion, laughter, and even crying I prefer to leave scars instead of ephemeral moments of decorative beauty; transformation and reflection instead of momentary pleasure. My painting is not intended to make moral judgments but observations, I do not accuse, but I exhibit; I do not declare but uncover situations to be seen. For me, the mission of art is to transform not to flatter from a position of comfort. I do not belong to any avant-garde of contemporary art, I am not interested in the art market, I only care about my work to which I dedicate myself with the passion of a medieval scribe. If I manage to touch a soul, a spirit, a conscience, a mind, my work acquires validity In my creative process I usually work by series following a common thread, a topic that I can develop by painting it from different angles.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
I would invite them to visit San Diego Museums of art, Introduced them to my fellow artists friends and would prepare a special dinner at home.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Since I was a small child, I loved to draw what people considered “strong “themes. I remember that while my peers at school were drawing cute flowers and writing papers about spring, I was already drawing a femme fatale, witches, vampires and two- headed boys. I used to read many stories: the tales of Hoffman, Andersen, Perrault and Grim, along with Colonial Mexican legends. Then there came Dostoyevsky, Kafka, Shakespeare, Zola, Lispector, Lobo Antunes, Steinbeck and many others have been indispensable in shaping the way I perceive life and in giving me the means to translate these human issues into images. When I started my career as a painter I experimented with the techniques I had learned at my Graphic Design studies. I began my practice by using oil colors, acrylics and water colors. A peer of mine suggested – based on my inclination for the obsessive details and brush strokes in my work- to try egg tempera, a perfect media that could help me achieve those characteristics; for that reason he recommend me to read and study “Il libro dell’arte” by Cennino Cenninni , a 15th century Italian painter. In this amazing book, I found step by step the detailed instructions for painting using egg tempera, as well as information about pigments, brushes, panel preparation and much more. The 15th century author became my best teacher; egg tempera has been my preferred technique for the last 25 years.