A Way to Heal the Soul with Mairon Almeida

A Way to Heal the Soul with Mairon Almeida

August 06, 2021

I live in Brazil today, in Rio de Janeiro. I believe in art as a way to heal the soul. My basic paintings are all inspired by my favourite book: My happy and dreamy works are spread around the world, mainly in France, UK and USA.

I have had several works exhibited in physical and virtual galleries in countries around the world. More than selling, my art makes me happy and is made to make everyone feel happy. I have held exhibitions in several galleries in Brazil and in other countries like the USA and Europe.

I worked with several publishers including the Moderna Publishing House located in São Paulo, where I collaborated with illustrations for the book "Novo - Ciências Humanas" published in 2020.

In addition, to several works as an illustrator and writer, I work in various media with a predilection for Acrylic and Indian Ink. I like my art to enchant and speak for itself!


What initially attracted you to becoming an artist?

I believe I was an artist before I even knew what art was. I believe we are all like that, we just forget as we grow up. I was born into a very poor family and my childhood was very sad. The way I found to get away from it all was to paint and write. Even before entering school I knew how to read and wrote my own books. I did the illustrations myself and I believe that was my beginning, but if I had to say what really attracted me it would be my grandmother. An old lady of more than 80 years, who was an artist without ever having been recognized. Both as creator of her stories and painting on old fabrics and papers! This introduced me to art and made me dream of one day having everything that my grandmother could not.

How would you describe your own personal style?

For many years I searched for a style because in the courses I only learned to paint landscapes and still life. I suffered to find it and the more I searched, the more I got lost. When I stopped looking I found myself in something I already practiced: My illustrations. My art style already existed and it was what I used to illustrate my stories. In this style that I took to the screens, I try to pass, in a disguised way, several feelings, mine, of my close friends and of unknown people. It's not that simple. you have to stop, analyze and reflect to notice everything that is disguised in strong colours. I love bold colours and that's why I use them often. You can often notice a sad scene disguised in something colourful and supposedly cheerful. This is my focus! An elegant, different, colourful art but full of unconscious information and lots of psychic information! 


 What pushed you in that direction and how can you see your work evolving in the future?

I don't know how it will evolve in the future as a lot has happened in the last ten years, a lot I didn't even think about. But I believe that I will never give up strong and vibrant colours, even to portray sadness and unpleasantness! What definitely pushed me in that direction were the catastrophic events that emerged during my life, that undoubtedly threw me into depression and panic and my escape from these evils was throwing me into creations and exposing in a veiled way my torments and sufferings.

What inspires you in your work, is there a motivating factor that draws you to the easel?

The events of the world always leave me inspired. It's true that most of the time they are sad things, but good things also happen and inspire me. When the feelings don't fit me anymore I put it on the canvas!

Are there particular individuals who encouraged/inspired you along the way, friends, family, teachers, maybe even other artists?

My teachers have always encouraged me in the past but I was very negative about working with art. I had prejudice in spite of everything. My grandmother was my biggest supporter and she still is! Even though she died in 2004, she continues to inspire me! Artists I admire are Marc Chagall and Joan Miró. The art of these two painters is really creative and different and their life stories are fascinating!


 When it comes to creating your work, do you have a favorite medium, certain types of brushes or tools that you love to use?

I absolutely love using Acrylic and Indian Ink. It's something that makes me feel very comfortable. I am allergic to oil paint and for a long time I had difficulty with it. I developed a special taste for Acrylic, Watercolour and Indian Ink. I prefer brushes made of synthetic material, nothing of animal origin. and I love wood. Painting on wood helps the world, ecological wood, of course!

When it comes to the subject of your work, what draws you to these subjects?

I love childhood and feelings! That attracts me. The books we read in childhood accompany us in our memories forever. I do this in my art, the portrayal of childhood and feelings!


Could you describe the process behind your art? How do you go from concept to execution?

Usually my paintings come complete in my mind. sometimes in the middle of the night. So I run, scribble fast so I don't forget, later I make a more elaborate graphite sketch. So that I capture the essence of my original thought. Sometimes I put together several sketches and it takes me a while to choose one and finish it. When I choose one of them, I transfer the sketch to canvas with charcoal or graphite, and then start painting which can take a week or even months. There are a lot of details that take time to complete but today I don't care about the time.

Could you describe your normal day as an artist? Have you established routines and rituals or is it more a case of when the time is right for you to work?

I already have several sketches saved, so I program myself to do one of them at a time. That way it's easier for me. But when an overwhelming inspiration comes I drop everything and start a new one without blinking. The exception is when I have work to order. In this case I follow a routine. I draw the sketches, send it to the client, he defines and I finish. I am also an illustrator so I have commitments with publishers. in this case, I also have to set aside a day to read the texts, prepare the sketches, send them to the editor and define everything to conclude with more agility.


When you work, do you focus on one piece at a time to completion, or are you working on multiple pieces at the same time?

Before, I concentrated on one piece at a time, but now I have to work on several pieces at the same time. that way my performance is better and I can honour my commitments in a more satisfying way.

How did your art evolve to be where it is today?

I personally believe with practice. I was working on them and my style was adapting itself. that way I didn't even notice, so I got to where I am today! And it's exactly the style I wanted.


Which of your works are you most proud of?

I believe all. They are like children. At the beginning I even had difficulty letting them go to the buyers' house! Believe it ! I was sad as if I was saying goodbye to a friend or loved one!

Is there a fellow artist alive today that you admire? If yes, why?

Yayoi Kusama is an interesting artist. not only for her style, with influences from minimalism, pop art, surrealism and abstract expressionism, but also for her life story and its troubles. I admire her. I also like Yoshitomo Nara among others.

If you could travel back in time, is there any particular artistic period/age you would like to be involved in?

I think not. But I would like to go back in time to meet some people, talk to them and express my admiration. Some of those people would include Miró, Marc Chagall, Salvador Dali and the writers Monteiro Lobato, Jean de la Fontaine and Beatrix Potter!



What challenges do you think the 21st century artist must overcome?

I believe that everything is a challenge. before, now and after. But something that is very useful today is the internet, however it becomes a challenge too. The internet united us but also weakened us. looking at too many websites, content and artwork can sometimes makes us fearful. Fearing failure more than in the past . Do not be intimidated by what you see on the internet and/or do not let yourself be influenced by everything, so as not to end up copying a style just because you think it will be successful.

What advice would you give an aspiring young artist currently studying art?

Certainly look inward rather than outward. Reading and understanding about art is good, but if you want to develop a style that doesn't build on anything that already exists, you're going to have to look a lot deeper inside yourself.

Although you have developed your own distinctive style, is there another art style that immediately attracts and admires you? Why?

Many works and styles attract me but nothing too specific. I really like Miró's art and his unique creativity. Marc Chagall with his distinctive features always attracts me. I can't explain why but maybe because of their unpretentious styles!

We've all heard of the unfinished masterpiece, even Da Vinci worked on the Mona Lisa for years and years. Do you have works that are in a continuous process of evolution? When working on a work of art, do you find it hard to give up? Know when it's enough?

I have had paintings where after two years of being set aside I decided to change them. Change something, remove some symbol or add a detail. I believe that as thoughts change, our view of things also ends up changing and that is why the changes are made. Today it's rare but I've done it a lot before.


 Many people see artists as storytellers or champions of a cause, do you believe it is the artist's responsibility to illuminate a particular subject/theme or do you create purely to express your creative nature?

I believe that everything is valid. In my way of thinking there are works where I actually tell history, in some I just express my deepest feelings and in other cases I portray everyday affairs in a semi-veiled way. Art is free and so is the artist. That's the best of all!

What are you currently working on?

I'm currently working on a series of paintings based on people I know. Celebrities and personalities. I had done quite a few bespoke jobs where people asked me to be portrayed as my characters, with the characteristics that I usually give them. This is something very interesting that makes people happy to see each other. Then I had the idea to do it with familiar characters, celebrities and personalities. Actually my first ones were Marilyn Monroe and Carmen Miranda. I've also done fictional characters like Asterix and Obelix, and characters from the Anime. Pokemon, Tintin, among others. It's fun to recreate them in the form of my characters.

Have you ever been part of any artistic group / movement? How did your work benefit from this experience?

I'm actually part of several artistic groups, although I lack time to be more active in them. I highlight some groups where we exchange ideas and thoughts. They are: Grupo Singulart Artist and Grupo Cercarte. It's a good strategy to discuss art but it hasn't influenced or changed my style.

When is your next show? Is it an individual or collective exhibition? Could you tell us a little about the exhibition, when and where it is?

I have a thousand ideas boiling in my mind and without a doubt a differentiated and colourful exhibition would be wonderful. However, this chaos of the Coronavirus made me hate any kind of exposure indefinitely. But, in the future, I will continue everything and plan something different, something so joyful and motivating that it sounds like a party celebrating the end of the pandemic. Something I really want is to create a play based on my paintings. something festive that also portrays my paintings and stories in a dramatic and completely theatrical way.

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