The Story of My Mother
Mixed media installation
77 x 45 x 38 in.
Our lives can be represented in three stages inside boxes. The first stage starts as I represent here, in a big box, the youth, with our golden dreams, then it continues to decrease into the mid age: the reality and maturity. This working moment is represented in a smaller box, and then finally inside the petit box is our oldness, we seem to diminish ourselves in material objects but we increase in spirit and interior life.
The Stories of My Life Series, encapsulates narrative segments of my family life. This series of three pieces focuses on the existential experiences of the life of my mother. They contain sharp narratives of the hits, the ups and downs, of the life of this exhilarating woman who was the first Miss Venezuela. Her stories and ordeals, told by her in a whimsical mood in my early childhood became fairy tales in my mind and memories. Sofia’s experiences and adventures deeply impacted me.
The first work of this Series, The Goddess, locates during the fifties when there were turbulent and repressive times in Venezuela under Dictator Marcos Perez Jimenez; but at the same time, they were moments of utter happiness for my mother when she was crown in 1952 as Miss Venezuela, well winning the hearts of the Venezuelan people, the adoration of men, and the admiration of women. Moments of ecstasies and exhilarations accompanied her in a rapt of fantasy and celebration, filled with fashion shows, press conferences, clubs parties, and private receptions. My mother became the Goddess! The Venus! The Aphrodite! I was stroke by this experience. Fashion gowns, luxurious banquets, public appearances, these are the first memories I have kept of my mother, pored over photographs, newspapers and magazine articles that she had saved through out the years. From this capsule of time of my mother’s history, a real life fairy tale, my creative world originates. In my work I replicate the photographs and the objects of my mother’s story in a miniature like world; a sort of box container in which I recreate the climax of her coronation, her crown, the flowers and her imperial throne as the ultimate dream of a woman in the peak of her success; conferring my mother, the Goddess, a tangible presence in this micro space of lights and illusions.
I render in The Goddess a personal imaginary theatre, floating the hopes and illusions, the passions and seductions, that a woman feels when elevated in a glimpse of time to a platform of glory.
The second work of this series, The Devoted, pays homage my mother, when she leaped into another cycle of life, the marriage, and her becoming a wife, and a mother of three children; a time when she confronted sacrifice and surrender to of a new reality in which the fairy tale has ended to, and her life became a routine of household tasks and domestic challenges; at last, a life well defined by rigid feminine roles archetypical of women of the fifties.
In the third piece of the serie, The Spirit, she seems to enjoy what she achieved in her life viewing the past within her memories waiting patiently for a hug or a kiss to never end.
We live in time and fall physically, but we grow in spirit, this is the real secret of life.