"I recycle the paper I use, which give my figurines an eco-friendly theme, and I use the icons of our culture in my designs."
"I'm Luciana Sandoval Coronado. I was born in 1976 in the populous city of Lima, the political, cultural, financial and commercial center of Peru. I'd say I'm super-creative, hardworking and responsible. I'm always ready to offer a smile.
"My life hasn't always been easy. The most difficult experience was as a mother of two children. It's taken a lot of sacrifices and had work to pay the bills each day while trying to develop my skills as an artist. Working independently has meant financial instability and I've had to divide myself into three at the same time.
"Even so, despite all the obstacles along the way, I really enjoy my papier maché designs and I work with joy and conviction. I've seen for myself that you can develop sustainable work through our popular arts. Every day is an affirmation of love and confidence in my chosen art form.
"I discovered papier maché when I was a young girl. My mother loved our Latin American handicrafts and she taught us to admire and appreciate them as well as the artisans who created them and handed down their skill from generation to generation.
"I thank God that my parents were able to pay for my studies in design and art. This is how I got the idea for my work. I recycle the paper I use, which gives my figurines an eco-friendly theme, and I use the icons of our culture in my designs.
"I learned the techniques when I was an art student and I took courses in Peruvian aesthetics and design. In addition to my personal interest in researching these themes, I teach classes on art, recycling and creativity to children and adults in different schools, towns, businesses and other associations that request them.
"I first began this great personal project in 2008 when I crafted my first designs. Since then, I've learned a lot more about everything, from improving my materials to developing strategies for promoting my art. I've learned a bit about management and business for artists, but without losing the ethics behind my project. Making my workshop sustainable over time has been quite a challenge.
"I love the way that creativity can flow during the crafting process. Papier maché transforms a discarded material into an object of art. My challenge is to teach this art in such a way that it can offer a sustainable job alternative for others.
"My inspiration comes from the artistic expressions of our native peoples, from my deep love for popular Peruvian art but also that of Latin American and of the world. We must learn to observe and admire, to value, respect and learn from this wonderful legacy.
"I dream of contributing in some way toward a conscience of recycling and re-utilizing discarded materials, not only in Peru but also in other parts of the world. I hope to send a message about caring for our environment through an eco-friendly lifestyle."