Brenda Barceló

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First Friday Artist Image

My art has always been the product of a passion, an inner thirst that moves me to create. I have been a woodcarver most of my life. At the age of 9, back in Uruguay, my country of birth, I carved my first wooden mask. It was a very small and painted matte black. Other masks followed, which I gave away to friends and family. After exploring ceramics, clay modeling, drawing, painting, tapestry, and other media, my natural tendency drew me back to wood, balsa wood to be specific.          

Why balsa? Fellow woodcarvers and close friends have asked me why I've chosen balsa wood, when it's so fragile and difficult to detail. They have encouraged me to try harder woods, stone or metal, but somehow, I've always stuck with balsa wood. Balsa provides a wonderful integration of the malleability of clay and the beauty and permanence of wood, without the hardness or coldness of stone. I love its lightness, its pure and even coloring, its smell, its feel to the touch.