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Panorama Internationals Arts & Sculpture Festival 2021: Interview with Gloria María Holguín Calderón, Coordinator for Colombia

While the Panorama Arts & Sculpture Festival is underway bringing together hundreds of artists from across the world, there are a few who have made this festival a grand success. We are here to introduce the coordinators who have done a brilliant job of gathering the artists for the mighty cause of humanity.

Gloria María Holguín Calderón was born in Santafé de Bogotá in 1961, and later settled in Santiago de Cali in 1970. She exercised her initial career as a Public Accountant for twenty years. However, art was something that had always touched her heart, so in 2005 she entered the School of Plastic Arts of the Popular Institute of Culture of Cali. “The invisibility of women in art” is a work that gave her the title of Plastic Artist. In 2014 she began professional studies in Visual Arts at the Antonio José Camacho University Institution and obtained the title of master’s in visual arts. Currently, she is a cultural manager that tends to generate exhibition spaces in unconventional places that give visibility to female artists. She continues in her studio painting and also writing poems. She is also working on her book on ordinary women who have dedicated their lives to different manifestations in art.

Let ‘s welcome Gloria María Holguín Calderón who is our coordinator for Colombia!

Welcome Gloria!

Would you like to tell us a few things about yourself?

Of course. Art came to me since I was a child and yet it was not until my adolescence that I began to put drawing and painting into practice. These initial expressions of art were straightforward and served as illustrations in notebooks or in my poetry writing. Over time I studied Public Accounting but definitely my essence was in the field of art. In the maturity of my life and in one of the most difficult stages, my real destiny pushed me to study arts. Currently I am a Plastic Artist with an emphasis in painting graduated from the Popular Institute of Culture, I am also a Master in Visual Arts graduated from The Antonio José Camacho University Institution.

What is art from your perspective?

Art for me is one of the ways in which the essence of being manifests itself, it is a concrete expression that magnifies and dignifies the human spirit. It is a response to the way humans see the world.

Do you think that art could be a means for social change? If so, how?

Definitely yes. I think this is proven. In my country – Colombia – there are neighborhoods located on the outskirts of the main cities where a bet has been made on the different manifestations of art and the result of this has been that these places have become tourist, paint murals, beautify their houses and stairs, betting on artisan work and creating workshops for young people and children have re-signified the very existence of these societies to the point that they are no longer classified as dangerous places. Art should be an important part of the public policies of a country, it should be a compulsory subject in the teaching of schools and colleges.

In these difficult times, is art a refuge?

Yes, I think it is a beautiful refuge. Without art in all its manifestations, I think we would not have been able to withstand the quarantines that have occurred due to the pandemic. Without art there are events in our life that we would not overcome.

How do you imagine our planet a decade from now?

I believe that our children and youth are more aware of what is bad for nature and the planet, so I imagine a planet that is cleaner, fairer and more balanced, more orderly and less consumer.

Can artists from around the world collaborate to balance the planet?

I believe that artists are morally obliged to point out what does not work well within a society, a country and the world in general. That is why some manifestations in art tend to be perceived as shocking, that seems to me that it generates an impact and a call for attention in the spectators that result in being aware and changing already established patterns.

Why did you participate in the Writers Capital Foundation Panorama Arts & Sculpture festival?

I think it is important to support these types of initiatives because they contribute to generating awareness and having a better world

How would you further contribute to universal harmony?

I think you should be aware that the changes are initially generated from within myself and then from the example this is replicated. Being an Artist – activist, supporting NGOs and programs for children, giving my knowledge in art to those who require it.

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