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ANGELINA QUIC IXTAMER

Angelina  was born in 1972 in San Juan La Laguna on lake Atitlan and is one of only a few women painters. The following quotes are from an interview with her in May of 2013. "Most of the women in my village do fine embroideries and weaving, but I wanted to do something different. My husband, Antonio Mendoza Coche, introduced me to oil painting. He taught me how to mix colors, which is an essential part of the art of painting. That's how I got on the path of becoming an artist.”  

"I am proud to say I am the first woman in my village to paint with oils. At first I had to face severe criticism from other women because they regarded painting as exclusive to men. However I never gave up despite their harsh comments and I fought to get ahead. Today I am very proud of persevering in my art.” “When I first began, I painted still life compositions. My favorite style, and the one I'm renowned for, is called 'bird's eye view.' It all began in 1992, when I was walking to the fair in a village nearby with my husband, and we stopped for a break. From that point we had a view of the landscape and villages below – it was so beautiful! It inspired me to paint like that, like seen from above, so I made my husband go up on rooftops and take photos of markets, and children, I also like to paint women weaving. Nowadays this style is renowned throughout Guatemala and many people work it, but my compositions are different because there is more work involved, including four layers of paint and many more details. I can take up to 20 days to finish a painting. I work on two or three paintings at a time. 

"In 2002, my husband and I were finally able to set up our own studio-gallery. My dream as an artist is to find a place where I can sell my compositions and exhibit my work in other countries. I would love to travel – it would be amazing if my paintings took me to visit other countries. I've exhibited extensively in Guatemala and collectors from the United States and other countries have purchased my paintings.  

"What I love most about what I do is that when I paint, I think back to the lives of our predecessors and the work they did on the fields, which is deeply rooted in my country's culture. Working the fields reminds me of my father because he dedicated his life to agriculture. I used to help with the coffee harvest and picked about sixty pounds a day. Now my husband and I are able to support ourselves with our art. Our art helps us to take pride in our culture and our community and to help preserve our traditions.. People begin to take us into account and value us.”

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The GuateMaya Art and Culture Connection
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