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Tres Mujeres Three Women
Victoria De Almeida
Painting - Acrylic On Canvas
Victoria de Almeida
More than 7 generations of my family have lived both in Santa Fe and Galisteo, New Mexico. The women in my family have always been especially prominent. It has been the matriarchs in my family that have kept the family united and strong. In this painting I wanted to convey that strength. The painting is representative of my mother (right), sister (middle), and me (left). The women are sitting together on an Indian rug inside the protection of their adobe home. They are united as one holding hands. My mother's hair is pulled back in a chignon as women did when they reached maturity. My sister's braids are pinned up as though she is in the transition from child to woman. The youngest girl of the family has braids. The doll in the baby's hands represents future generations of women that will be nurtured, protected, and strong.
I was born and raised in the beautiful state of New Mexico. I have been drawing ever since I can remember. Growing up, I was surrounded by the paintings of both my grandfather and father. Their subjects were inevitably the churches, people, and landscapes of New Mexico. As a little girl, I spent many Saturday afternoons sitting in a chair beside my dad�s easel watching him paint. I would happily keep him company, chattering away and rubbing his soft brushes against my cheek. Soon, he would set me up with my own easel, and I�ve loved art ever since.
Another big influence in my art has been the memories and experiences I have had being part of a huge, beautiful, extended family. San Pascual is one of my favorite saints to paint because of my love and memories of my grandma Reynalda Almeida. My greatest fortune in life has been being one of her 22 grandchildren. She lived in a little adobe casita near Canyon Road in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The heart of my Grandma�s home beat in the kitchen. As we drove to her home down the little hill street of Camino Sin Nombre, my heart fluttered with anticipation. She always had a pot simmering on the stove and open arms ready for her family. The rich smell of red chile would permeate the house while my Grandma would push my small hands into a floury bowl of tortilla dough.
My Grandma embodied everything I find beautiful about the Hispanic culture: generosity of spirit and home, love of family, and pride in who you are and where you came from. My paintings come from a heart full of memories and love for my Hispanic heritage.
Victoria de Almeida
�2008 All rights reserved
Santa Fe, New Mexico
April 8th, 2011
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