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Meet Adela Salas

Today we’d like to introduce you to Adela Salas.

Adela, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Ever since I was a child I was exposed to art and storytelling. I came to learn and adapt to different cultures as I grew older that awaken my senses to explore and be creative in various ways. My story telling background comes from my hometown. I was born and raised in Santiago, Chile. During my early years of life, I came across a society that was very outspoken about what changes need to be made within the society. During my teenagers years, I came to the United States which led me to be exposed to another reality.

While living in the United States I gain a background in multimedia design and video editor through school and job-related projects. However, as humans, we are in a constant search for what makes us truly happy. In my late 20’s I went back to college to study Fine Arts with a concentration in Sculpture at FAU in Boca Raton FL. I loved working with my hands, painting and building structures in school because I was able to tell a story in different mediums. After graduation, I became a High School Art Teacher at a small town in Florida (Okeechobee) It was a cultural shock and huge contrast moving from a big city to a small town. However, this move made me put into contrast all the different realities I have gained throughout the years to put it into my art practice. For three years, I remember rushing home from work to paint. I started painting in whatever was accessible for me. I found some big banners and transform these banners into colorful paintings. At the end of my third year of teaching, it became obvious that art had completely taken over my life. I came to understand that I wanted to be more than just an Art teacher. Consequently, I gave in into my passion to become a full time artist to fulfill my happiness.

Has it been a smooth road?
Life is a fascinating road but every now and then there are obstacles on the way. I’m a very loving and positive person and I like to contemplate obstacles, not as something negative. Yes, it is been a road with many struggles but that’s what makes life exciting and inspiring. I’m a strong believer that everything in life happens for a reason. We are owners of our lives and we’re in charge of giving purpose to everything that happens to us. My biggest “obstacle” was realizing that art is what makes me happy.

I’m in my mid 30’s and just now a couple of months ago I decided to become a full-time artist. For many years the fear of the unknown kept me away from what is so natural to me. Today, the fear is gone and I’m connected in deep with my art practice. As a human, we have the tendency to look everything in negative ways, but whenever we encounter obstacles they can be extremely inspiring for the creative stage process! How we overcome challenges and obstacles are part of our stories as an artist too. Obstacles in my road and other people’s roads are a big inspiration and I enjoy to connect it in my work. I connect with other women and their stories and struggles. This is a repetitive topic in my most recent paintings.

Please tell us more about your work, what you are currently focused on and most proud of.
I love to create art that transforms the lives of others. Art transforms me into the woman I am today. Expressing and transforming spaces, walls, or canvases is what I do. I paint with acrylic and oil but I’m not limited to experiment with other mediums. My paintings are very colorful and vivid. Expressing what is inside me brings joy, happiness and healing to life. My works emerge in the interdisciplinary space of art and social practice. Currently, my work centers on exploring feminine narratives in aesthetics and personal experiences. I’m fascinated by storytelling and learning from other women’s struggles.

My mission is to empower individuals and guide them through their own healing journey. Portraits, nude bodies, vivid colors, lines, and dots are repetitive in my works. Repetition: its essential role in the harming and healing of our bodies. I find important to achieve pieces filled with this kind of emotions. As a Latinx woman in a country where I belong to a minority women’s empowerment is an important and critical aspect of achieving gender equality. My objective is to increase a woman’s sense of self-worth and her power and control over her own life inside and outside the home. My goal is to open a conversation about social injustices and how art can speak, but also create changes and healing to our society.

Do you have any advice for other artists? Any lessons you wished you learned earlier?
I’m thankful for my journey and every person who has crossed my path. I would not change anything, life experiences have helped and shaped me grow as an artist. My role as an artist is to be able to transform. Transforming and transferring emotions from one place to another and directing this emotions and stories into something tangible. This is my true calling and my whole happiness. I wasn’t sure that art would bring this much joy. Fear holds me back for years, but it was necessary to transform me into the woman artist I am today. Who I was and who I’ll be are irrelevant in comparison to the artist who I am right now. There is always room for growth. Growth and insight are life’s greatest gifts. When you are open to learning and growing, you are on the path for happiness and true satisfaction in life and love.

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