"When I was seven, I was very close to my grandfather. He was an artist and loved to paint. I hung around him while he worked… I was interested in everything he did!"
"Art is my challenge and, as Pablo Picasso said, 'Inspiration exists. May it find you working.' He was absolutely right.
"I'm Aida Manrique Lara de Rios. I was born in Lima in 1947. I consider myself a truthful woman, loyal and with a singular — and unexpected — sense of humor. I tend to surprise people I'm chatting with.
"When I was seven, I was very close to my grandfather. He was an artist and loved to paint. He also created wood sculptures. I hung around him while he worked, helping and asking him questions. I was interested in everything he did!
"It was fascinating to see how he created his works of art, turning his materials into objects with great visual impact. My curiosity was aroused at a very early age and my grandfather recognized this.
"He discovered the energy, the passion and the deep desire I felt to learn about art and these feelings just kept growing stronger. Even back then, I knew very clearly that I wanted to be an artist. And I've never stopped.
"My first art classes were at home with my grandfather, and in his workshop. Later on, when I finished high school, I decided to pursue professional art studies. How I enjoyed this period in my life! I loved every class, every course and seminar. It was so exciting and I had so much fun that my grades were always excellent.
"After a while, I was able to teach and share my knowledge in classes I held in my home. This was very rewarding experience, as my students always arrived ready to create their best work and they were more than willing to learn.
"To truly master my art, I had to work very hard to achieve the perseverance needed. I had to be insistent because many times a person wants to retreat or step aside but that only makes our difficulties worse. So I had to be strong and follow my convictions while also fulfilling the roles of daughter, mother and wife. I experienced each of these life stages intensely and this always inspired my art.
"My dream is to continue painting and developing my art until the last day of my life, if God permits it."