My name is Maria Arias, I was born in Venezuela and I started painting at the age of 8 years old. Because of the hard schedule of the school I went to, I stopped painting at the age of 12.
I followed engineering studies and graduated in 2003. The next year I moved to France, running away from the chaos of my country and leaving everything behind.
I arrived in France with nothing, not even the knowledge of the French language. I finished doing my masters and got a PhD in chemistry.
In 2007, I moved to the Netherlands where I could finally feel at home again, I started doing more for animal rights, I also started dancing flamenco, and got a job as a Chemical Engineer.
Then, after moving, I found I could settle and I stopped delaying my dreams.
I did an acrylic courses at Colorato.com to refresh and I start learning other techniques by myself and did Master classes with Marjolein Kruijt and Marissa Oosterlee.
As an animal defender
During an exhibition in 2007 at the Gallery Codex Nicaragüa, A man pretending to be an artist presented a “work” that made me wake up and decide that actions shall be taken from now on to help animals. In a gallery, he exposed a stray malnourished and scary dog to the visitors, the dog was part of his art and on the wall it was written with dog food “You are what you read.” This crazy and sadic man left the dog starving and dehydrated to probe the indifference of people. I couldn’t believe it! At that moment I start some campaigns to help animals, one of my campaigns was http://semanadelanimal.blogspot.nl/, I have been helping groups of people I like to call my Idols, because they rescue animals and help them to get a second chance in life.
As an artist
I never stop being an artist, only I wasn’t painting all the time… I always joined creative events like theater at school, university, making videos or posters to help animals to get adopted…
Moving from one country to another requires some time to adjust, I was absorbed by my work and I sometimes closed my eyes to all the others things in life.
When my cat Kriska (My black and white cat) got sick with breast cancer I start reading about animal communication, and start doing some healing meditations on her. Her behaviors changed so much (she was a tiger before), so we had the best moments together at that time. After that I continued growing a bit more spiritually and with Toby our new cat, I was so inspired to create…it is difficult to mark a starting point but it is surely related with me growing spiritually and the arrival of Toby that the blockage I had about painting start disappearing.
Animals and specially our animal companions deserve to be honored. I want all the animals to be treated like kings or at least with respect.
While making an artwork I try to connect with the animal, sometimes I feel things, I change my behavior, sometimes I see the animal walking around me, I am still learning how to recognize what belongs to me and what is coming from the animal…this is a really magic moment, I feel safe and loved…it is amazing and I am so happy, that experience allows me to bring character to the animal.
This is my message, animals are so much more than we can ever imagine!!!
Believe they are much more than you think and you will open the door to the most fulfilling love experience.