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Coffee has been important to generations of my family. My mom's side of the family is Cuban and my dad's family is from Guatemala. Both countries are known for their coffee. The use of coffee filters in each collage and sculpture stems from my roots. I was introduced to Cuban coffee when I was very young. I vividly remember my Abuela Esther making the Bustelo espresso in her cafetera on the stovetop, as people came over for a cafecito and buttered bread in the mornings. Abuela would prepare a little demitasse of café con leche for me to enjoy even though I was only about 5 years old. The smell of this memory is so distinct and familiar. This was how it was for generations before me and it will continue with my mother and her grandchildren and so on.


The dynamic in which I speak Spanish is louder, faster, and more aggressive than when I speak English. That translates into my work with the shapes and layering I use. To a non-Spanish speaker, it seems my family talks over each other at dinner, but we actually are able to engage in multiple conversations at once. It comes across as chaotic to people who are not used to that environment. In the same way, the goal of my collage is to overlap and compete within the piece, but in the end have a final product full of unconventional harmony and balance. 


My most cherished memories are from holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas. That is usually when the whole family makes it a point to get together and celebrate in true Latino fashion. All the aunts, uncles, cousins and family friends show up to my grandparents' house in New Orleans, Louisiana. Guests are always welcome and the term "mi casa es su casa" especially applies at Abuelo and Abuela's. It is always crowded and lively and they love it that way. Strangers quickly become a part of our family too.


Family and food and music is the heart of the Latino home and it is the heartbeat of my inspiration-- 

 sprinkled with a little jazz, crawfish and beignets. 

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