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visual artist and writer marisol diaz

i am a self-defined Nuyorican creative (that is a Puerto Rican who is from both the isles of Manhattan, NYC and the Caribbean). I share daily in the joy of education and live in a cute port town in New York, in a 'teensy-weensy' apartment with my two dogs and canary named Valentino. Check out my Etsy shop for purchasable pieces. Please do not reproduce imagery off of this site without explicit credit and no derivatives may be made of my original imagery- Thank You.

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Entries in art (11)


Joyita Series (little jewel) layered resin ink paintings

New small work available - stay tuned for the Nyack Center's new art/craft fair Nov. 29th!2015

All my resin experimenting is beginning to pay off as I am beginning to return to older paintings and repaint layers between the resin, and re-coating. The result is intriguing to me as it mimics my escapades with warm fused glass and the layering of fused glass blocks that I used to do. It demands a lot of patience ...and is ridiculously difficult to photograph, as you can't see the dimension or depth in the photo as you can when the piece is in your hand...but part of me likes that defying of virtual space.

Joyita (little jewel series)

Healing the Creative Heart 

self m.diaz

You all know the term,'spooning', allowing and encouraging your body to curve, mold and encase another's so that they become warm nooks & crannies for each of your limbs. Your forehead fitted into the nape, the smell of the pheromones that intoxicate you. The other's heartbeat lulling you and your responding lips to sleep. Becoming familiar extensions of each other. Having lived together side by side, job-free, breathing the same summer air 24 hours a day for 76 days spooning...well the untethering is brutal. It is reminiscent of a phantom limb that you insist is there, when it is not.

With many of our creative, over-active imaginations who knows how long or if it was ever there to begin with.

You know that bubble gum effect of our hearts and noisy minds; webbed, stretched, fibrous, gummy, sticky residue of emotions pulling off. Especially when you were fooled into believing you were both working to understand this phenomenal bond... Every image, every selfie, every memory has you both smiling cheek to cheek. Pulling off the gum of serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine is by far one of the hardest habit reversals we ever face. Especially the inside voice and thoughts that person was a receptor for, when you have no other confidante.

When you love big and hard you are like, Atlas holding that love, that world, that dream, high up over your head, so high, so high, so high that when your arms can't bear the weight any longer and you bring them down you are shocked to see - your love never came down with you.

Now in Puerto Rico, and probably quite a few other places in the world, we have a saying that you can remove a nail with another nail. Some of us disconnect from lovers in our lives by giving that love away to someone new. In fact some say you can't give romantic love to the new without taking it away from the old. Just look at the premise of the new film, My Old Lady with Maggie Smith and Kevin Kline. Some of us disconnect by substituting one human vessel with another. And if you are alone in struggling with the habit reversal and your partner is not, the chances are that your partner has moved on by doing just that. Especially if they have verbalized the desire to be with others to you often or have even admitted as much.

These toxic heart things would be difficult for anyone no matter how tempered and resilient. Now fast-forward to the world becoming too big, too alienated, too spiritual-less, too screen-addicted, too lonely. Fear, fear of world crisis, fear of being female, fear of being alone, growing old, fear of living. Anxiety cases growing astronomically globally and more of us experiencing panic attacks than ever before. What do you do?

As creatives this is especially difficult. No need for an art history lesson and the revelations between creativity, love and madness.

You'll hear so many suggestions. 'Love yourself', 'Find yourself' as though feeling like you won't survive this love means you don't love yourself. Of course you love yourself, if you didn't how else could you have come to love truer with as much forgiveness, dedication, loyalty, ferocity, and faith-driven persistence not letting go too easy. Those who love themselves are the one's working to hold it together, forgiving lies- once, twice, being made a fool and holding love up over their heads.

Don't misunderstand me, there are definitely many of us who do not love themselves. In fact, I would venture to say they are often the one's 'at war with love' stringing us along, vacillating, not sure of what they want, using you here, not wanting you there, being inconsiderate of you and what you do, breaking hearts like irresponsible bulls in china shops. They are the ones who need to be told to go find themselves, love themselves, and learn to be whole and present before trying to make a life with someone.

So what do you do? You'll close up, clam up, sleep, cry, cry while you sleep, walk lots of walks, cry while you walk, and lock yourself up. When it feels like weeks have gone by and you are still in a state of raw pain you'll hear the words 'meds' and imagine the hospital gown and the cold flush of a tranquilizer shot soothing you into slumber. And for some this may be the way, especially when anti-depressant prescriptions are so readily dispersed. But for me the question was how to heal without intervention.

That has become my determination.

sketchbook page soul-gutted by m.diaz

And I would like to share this journey with other creatives hurting - so no one has to feel as alone and misunderstood as I have, even while you know the one true thing you loved has left you, staged your reality, and is giving all the beauty you bestowed upon their brow away to another.

First I would like to start with sharing tactics that have been helping me in my next few blog posts, things like how to write, draw, paint when you have no drive. How to use routines and healthy habits to create and maintain habit reversal. That doesn't mean I'm no longer waking up at 3, 4 or 5 am with heart racing realizing in hyper-speed that my life as I knew it and my dreams have been radically altered. I am still in mourning of the living- but the process has picked up momentum, and I have slowly reclaimed my mind and find myself laughing more than crying, or have less and less moments in which I am pestered and plagued by fixated thoughts & replays of betrayals.

And as you look at the sketchbook page above, I'd like to offer a different way of seeing it- as opposed to soul-gutted.

You see being able to truly LOVE couldn't possibly be pain free. And that is not necessarily a bad thing.

Buddhism, 5th century brain science, has the Buddha enduring suffering and it was that very poison turned to medicine the brought him to enlightenment. Now I KNOW THAT IS EASIER SAID THAN DONE and the how as I learn it is what I want to share.

As a young Buddhist recently articulated, it weren't for cellular muscles ripping/tearing when you work out we wouldn't grow stronger- the 'tear' of a muscle the two major ways are that contractile proteins (actin & myosin) are damaged which is ESSENTIAL part of synthesis for making the muscle mass grow. And for those of us creatives especially the sculptors, you know the often powerful result of putting a material through stress like hammering heated metal into form to forge a beautiful sword. Perhaps my sketch is recognizing the essential pain of being CAPABLE of loving empathically and truly.

So for too long I have been seeing myself as the rumi quote -

'The friend comes into my body Looking for the center, unable to find it, Draws a blade and strikes anywhere'
This is me perceiving myself as wounded and scarred by someone I trusted. Though that may actually be - it has also given way to scarification that has made me tougher, clearer, stronger, and in awe of what I am capable of resurrecting from. Many who misunderstand Buddhism believe that it encourages no earthly attachments. It's not the case we will have desire and we will have attachments - it is the ability to affect the mind so as not to be GUTTED by the suffering of those attachments that leads to enlightenment and the suffering is essential to obtaining the transcendence.

Instead I want to share this quote:

Quote from The Heart of the Lotus Sutra by Daisaku Ikeda

New Paintings, Tonalli Exhibit - Fire 

Sam Andaran (Fire Within in Persian) Axolotl by M. Diaz 22x30 Ink Painting and Mixed Media Sam Andaran/Fire Within Detail by M. Diaz Detail shot of an Axolotl by M.Diaz me with Tonalli @ Anne Arundel Community College

New Art, Tonalli Exhibit, Water Painting 

El Pez Por Su Propia Boca Muere/ The Fish by its own Mouth Dies 22x30 by M. Diaz El Pez detail 22x30 Mixed Media Ink painting by M.Diaz el Pez detail by M.Diaz Me with 'El Pez Por Su Propia Boca Muere'

This was one of the first pieces I developed for the Tonalli Exhibit in Arnold Maryland his month, though it's the third piece I'm revealing here. It is entitled, El Pez Por Su Propia Boca Muere which translates to the fish by its very own mouth dies. It has three-dimensional pieces on it and is encased in a coating of resin, hard to photograph due to the gloss.

It's funny how I found the pieces which are 22x30 so large when working on them, but it appears so much smaller on the gallery wall- all the white wall space just eats it up.

Obviously this is the water piece in the Earth, Air,Water and Fire series. I know some of my students are seriously freaked out about the hook in the mouth, though I'm sorry for that, I still feel it's one of my strongest pieces when it comes to wordlessly communicating my emotions and my inability to be understood.


New Art, Ink Paintings in Tonalli Exhibit in Arnold, Maryland

If you're following the new art and saw the blog post before this one, you'll see that the last painting I posted (My Lepidoptera Heart) is my 'Air' piece in my new Earth, Air, Water and Fire series. Since many of you can't get to the Maryland exhibit I'm showing all the pieces here in a reveal.

The next piece I'm revealing is the Earth piece, entitled, Esurio the Latin word meaning 'to hunger'.

Esurio by m.diaz 22x30 Ink Painting and Mixed Media Esurio Detail 22x30 Mixed Media Esurio Wolf Detail 22x30 ink painting & mixed media hope you're enjoying the reveal,

New 'Latina' Art, New Solo Show- Tonalli, Anne Arundel Community College Gallery Art

It's been a whirl-wind of a summer driving cross-country and producing new art work in a traveling studio with two pups and my beau, as I drove to and from NY to Mexico this summer. Let's just say I'm looking forward to some hotel-free normalcy, but have a new found itch for a tear-drop silver bullet trailer home...Anyway here is a new solo exhibit to show for it - If you're around Arnold, Maryland Anne Arundel Community College hope you stop by to check it out! Other wise stay tuned to my blog as I will be slowly revealing the pieces in the show here. My Lepidoptera Heart 22x30 Ink and Mixed Media August 2013 Detail shot of My Lepidoptera Heart

The Flyer to My Opening This Weekend 

My Flyer for the Azucarera Exhibit by m. diaz

Basically, I ran out of funds this time (go figure - for my first solo in a long while) and couldn't order a postcard so I had to resort to making a flyer. I like it though - hope you do to. Wish you could ALL come! My goal is to have images from the show available for sale as small prints on the SHOP NOW! button up on my top menu bar so if you love a design it is accessible and afforadable.

- Ciao Amarettogirl!


New Art Pieces for Azucarera NYC 

As promised I'm showing an update on the art work I've been making for the gallery show coming up on April 10th. The opening will be Saturday the 10th from 7-9pm.

For those of you who don't know what I'm working on, these pieces are exploring aspects of self and manifestations of the animalistic parts of our nature.

My newest piece detail shot in progress photo and art by marisol diaz New Painting by marisol diaz Pan detail new work by marisol diaz Black Leopard IN PROGRESS by marisol diaz foxhead phase 1 new art by marisol diaz Foxhead phase2 painting by marisol diazFoxhead detail painting and photo by marisol diaz


Yesterday I took a break from painting, did some spring cleaning and had some friends come over for an Anti- Bahamas gathering. I received an AWESOME pen pal letter and gift in the mail that I will be sure to blog about this week.

The GIVEAWAY is only 4 days away!! So be sure you're up to date with all your commenting ;9

I'm also working on updating my website so that some of my art can be purchased as prints directly from here:)) Hopefully, there will soon be a SHOP NOW! button.

But right now the SUN is screaming my name so I'm off to absorb some of her healing rays!

Today's question - If you had to choose, what Animal do you associate yourself with??

-Ciao Amarettogirl


Emerging Artists who Caught My Eye Part I 

Seeing as I haven't been feeling well these days (looks like what I thought was a cold or developing allergies may be turning into my chronic bronchitis again- but I'm still fighting it), the hub thought it would be nice to take a drive up to Connecticut to see the last hour of the senior thesis art exhibit of one of my former students, Lorena Estrella. Lorena is currently a double major (Latin American Studies and Printmaking) and is now the second of my students who took printmaking with me in high school and went on to major in it in college. If that's not good medicine, I don't know what is!

Lorena is about to graduate Wesleyan University. While there I got to see another former student of both my hubs and I, Nikki Long (psych major) and we got to see other artists in the senior thesis show. The two others (along with Lorena's that really caught my eye) are Nicolina Baxter and Eric Bissell. There were others exhibiting, but had I walked into that space in any New York City gallery these three are the ones I would have photographed for you anyway. So here is part I of three post- each is very different so stay tuned.

Lorena Estrella with her senior thesis prints entitled 'ataduras' Lorena's ataduras print photo by m.diazLorena's ataduras print photo by m.diaz Lorena in the printmaking studio displaying her drawerLorena's matrix from one of her prints

Yes, the Giveaway is still going strong (i'm amazed!) and April 4th is almost here!

-ciao Amarettogirl


ART & Art House Co-op, Opportunities for Visual Artist Nationally

The Sunday Scribbling post this weekend is the word ART.

In my life 'art' is one of two small three letter words (you can guess what the other is) that in its munificence and multiplicity of interpretations is as all encompassing and one of the anthropological enigmas and forces of a human being's existence. The human need to create, construct, design, document, communicate, exhibit and display emotive, aesthetic, visual, kinetic, auditory, sensory or political statements that infer reaction (even if silent) has been a point of great controversy when attempting to encapsulate and define the word 'art'. Though not to the same degree it is in that same way that wars are waged over defining the word God.

I carry an MFA - a Master's Degree of Fine Art and I have walked in that world of higher aspiring gallery-tooting artists for quite some time. The kind that dismiss lesser art-forms; crafts, instruction, function, accessible, non-toxic techniques and community - the kind that believe that the lofty studio is the only form of daily, noble occupation they should hold. However, I have found myself not prescribing to an elitist, high-brow definition of art-making either with food, word, song, color, line, form or performance. Therefore I do not distinguish (like many in my field) between Craft and Fine art.

Beauty Cage Sculpture by marisol diaz

That doesn't mean I don't wish my daily grind was facing my own rules in my own studio daily (who wouldn't), it means I do not believe it is my gift alone to have and I do believe that the joy of experiencing art is teachable. Affirmation is doable. It means I do not see function as lending a utilitarian, hand-evident and therefore neophyte quality to the art-piece. It means that I believe art is for everyone, in everyone and about everyone - whether you are in-tuned with it or not. The evident work of the laborer and hand in a piece of art is just as much a masterpiece as the art work whose maker masters at disguising there was ever a hand there.

In the visual arts those who say - 'I cannot draw' are denying themselves the lifting of a veil, since it begins with simply making a mark and ends with the practice of doing piano scales, because we do indeed admit that we can learn. What is it after all you are trying to draw? Sure there is something said about inherent talent, amazing innate gifts of skill and fluidity, but even the artist born with those abilities are making art hoping to touch the artist in others. To me its that simple connection that determines the extraordinary reach of the word art.

Art House Co-op Sketchbook Show Excerpt by marisol diaz

So I have a new self-imposed deadline, and here's why:

One of my visual art students (artist Colin Alexander) told me and my hub (fellow artist and teacher) about Art House and an exhibit opportunity that we should look into. So we did. Now our student, my hub and I are all submitting work for the sketchbook show and we will be exhibiting together! So what is ART HOUSE and how can we all benefit?

Art House creates massive, nationwide (and global) art projects that tie hundreds of artists together – and anyone can participate. We started two years ago with the goal of bringing art to the masses. Since we started, we have interacted with thousands of artists from around the world, all brought together with the common goal of creating art and sharing it with each other. We host many of the exhibitions for our projects at our gallery in Atlanta, Ga. In an attempt to give artists as much recognition as possible, as well as providing the opportunity to see the exhibition that they're a part of in person, we have started taking select projects to guest galleries around the country.