El Deseo

Collage, Fine Art
Year Created: 2019
︎︎︎Click here to view piece in UF DRC’s Disability Liberation Art Gallery

The term “desire” took me back to my early years as a child. This piece serves as an homage to the simpler times when my grandpa would tell me how proud he was of me, when my grandma and I used to draw random people and houses, when my sister and I would go to Las Vegas every summer and send out postcards to our moms. Each character is representative of a grandparent that is, or has been, in my life, each having their own identity and own story to tell.

My grandma has always been stuck in the past, specifically the 1950’s. She lives through memories, she dwells on what could’ve been. My grandpa has always been family oriented and focused on giving rather than receiving, hence why there is a family photo on top of him. My abuelita in the center looks directly at the viewer as she is friendly towards anyone, and I mean literally anyone. My abuelo (her ex-husband) hides behind her as I was never really close with him but I know he cared about me in some way. At the ends of each corner contains handwritten notes my parents wrote me on a Christmas card. I’ve even included an envelope my significant other gave to me.
Every collage element has significance to my life, from birthday cards to handwritten notes to postage stamps. These item I keep everything stored in a memory box I’ve had since forever. Family is an important virtue in my life, and I’ve strived to honor them in this wholesome piece.
Marissa Balbuena ©