I grew up surrounded by the smell of oil paint,
turpentine and linseed oil. I was taught to look
beyond the basic colors and search for the subtle
tones. A leaf was not just green; it could be
yellow-green, red-green, or brown-green. This is how
my father taught me to look at the world, and until
today this is how I perceive it. I like to believe
that I was born an artist; that it is my fate and that
no matter what I do, I cannot deny it.

I believe that there is a range of ways to approach a
piece of art: From a strictly rational point of view,
where we look for the signified, asking for answers or
explanations, to a more emotional one that comes
through sensations, with nothing to explain or
understand, nothing to be interpreted, just open to
the intensities that emanate from the work. My
drawings should not be placed in either category,
since they move back and forth between these two
worlds. It took me a few years to realize that
besides political, social or moralizing work, it was
also possible to make art with a strong aesthetic
component, work that obeys impulses and sensations.
It is not senseless, since it comes from a process of
thought like every creative act; but instead of trying
to illustrate a concept or idea, it is the idea, it is
the concept that comes through the hand in the form of
a stroke, a color, a drip, a smudge.

Sandra Mack-Valencia
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