CRISTINA MAYA CAETANO
The vocation of Cristina is sensitive and lives in her spirit, intending to spread spirituality and sensitize the world to light and love. The main themes and focus of her work consist of the invisibility of what is beyond human vision, constant spiritual growth, conscious of the union of everything and everyone. For this, Cristina turns to the figurative with analysis and preferential study of the human being, landscapes, symbologies, and nature with a special focus on flowers, plants, animals, and birds. Always keeping in mind the meaning of the “objects” in the study allied to what she intends to convey. Cristina transforms “what she sees”, into what she “feels” with the eyes of her inner self. To these “ingredients,” she mixes the abstract with the colors and their respective messages, in a harmonious color complement. In all of Cristina’s work, she always gives a personal and unique stamp to every painting, which she intends to stand out from the visible reality, to allow the entrance of the dream, of the realization of ideas, and the disclosure and construction of a better new world.
For Cristina art is life, light, vibration, harmony and love. Art is EVERYTHING!
Amira Hassan: Can you share with us your story as an artist, how you started your journey in writing, tell us more about your creative background and career so far?
Cristina: How I started – A deep depression gripped me for years. I didn’t even feel it, because I was dead inside. To save myself, I had to delve into myself and discover myself. With the help of the psychologist and psychiatrist, I went back to my origins: what did you like to do as a child? What made me smile? With difficulty, I realized that painting and writing were the loves of my childhood and adolescence. At the same time, I turned to spirituality, and vegetarianism which gave me support for the changes that were taking place within me. I didn’t go back to the job I had at a city council, I finished my master’s thesis in African studies and turned to the arts which was without a doubt my salvation, discovering an unbelievable strength that encouraged me to continue even without much family support. “Conhecer o Teatro em Moçambique”, more scientific writing, was my first book and, progressively, I discovered other artistic valances that I didn’t even imagine. Children’s writing accompanied the discovery of illustration; poetry the description of the painting; the chronicles and the romance writing were a growing part of my discovery that, along with the storytellers, completed my feminine and personal Ying, with the I of my name Maia becoming Maya in celebration of the identity discovered in this adventure. Currently, I am completely cured and without taking any depressant medication. It is a past of pain that reminds me that the transformation of any one of us is possible and that the disease does not have to embarrass us but rather dignify us for being able to accept and overcome it.
Creative experience – I like to study each topic and “sleep under the subject” as is customary to say. I do rehearsals, research, and sketches and each creation is an experimental adventure.
Career so far – I edited three books: The first “Conhecer o Teatro em Moçambique” based on my Master’s thesis in African Studies and it was a pioneering book on the original and sensational theater of Mozambique. The book was sold in Portugal and Mozambique, and served as a study for university students from the Faculty of Maputo in the study of the area.
The other two books belong to my children’s collection of seven volumes, also illustrated by me, which is also a “Fadinha Lótus” brand (the entire collection is translated into English and Spanish and each book has its corresponding coloring book). With these children’s books, I went to several schools in Portugal, where I told the story with puppets and theater and encouraged and carried out several projects around books.
I have other unpublished children’s books, poetry, and novels. With the chronicles, “Ver e Sentir”, I participated in newspapers of Abrantes Journal; Daily Journal of Aveiro; Pinhel Falcon; Online Root, and FM Radio Aveiro.
In poetry, I participated in several poetic newspapers and gatherings, and several national and international poetic anthologies, culminating in a poetic prize in Argentina.
In painting, I am an award-winning painter and I have participated in important exhibitions in the world like Spain; Germany; France; Italy; USA, Austria, Scotland; Sweden; Hungary; England; Japan; Portugal; Denmark; Switzerland; Morocco; Belgium; Luxembourg; Ukraine; Algeria; India. My work has been reported in international interviews and published in International specialized Magazines and Art books.
Amira Hassan: Your Poem “Flying Ashes” has been accepted in the international poetic anthology, which is a great piece of writing, the poem talks about how the human kind’s relationship with Nature is becoming more darker in metaphor and in reality, kindly describe this dynamic change that is happening in our world at the moment?
Cristina: It’s a bottom-up relationship: destroying what matters without looking at the means to do so. We are part of nature and we depend on it. By mistreating our Mother Nature, we are mistreating ourselves as a human race, revealing our great evolved backwardness. Fortunately, the younger ones denote more evolved spirits with an awakening of conscience that shakes the current foundations and embarrasses the older ones.
Amira Hassan: I really love these sentences from your submission, which says:
“Oh darkness, speak to me.
So much blackness frightens and disturbs.
Fields, forests, meadows, dyed black,
will encourage the collective demands of beings.
Animals run, trees and flowers cry,
in a suffering heartbeat of the Earth,
in screaming echoes that no one wants to know,
lost in so many disordered directions.
Why, foolish man, do you do that?”
Can you share the story behind creating this piece of poetry?
Cristina: In 2017, there were huge fires both in the USA and in my country, Portugal. The images on television of the arson destruction of a country so far away, the Portuguese landscapes once so verdant and wooded, in which many of them I used to walk around transformed into the dust of blackness, left me deeply desolate and disappointed with human conduct, with no respect for any type of property or life, be it plant, animal.
In this context, this poem is an alert to the scourge of fires, as a heartfelt tribute to the victims of these and all fires spread across the world. Even in different continents with their own cultures and customs, the pain of loss, death, and misfortune always smells like the poisoned perfume of SUFFERING. The Human being, has a strong odor, that crosses oceans, crosses borders, and climbs mountains screaming that WE ARE ALL ONE and that your suffering affects my world and mine affects yours. They are the invisible mechanisms unattainable by human materialistic blindness, which constitute the last piece that remains to be understood to carry out the necessary quantum leap for the evolution of humanity.
Amira Hassan: I love how you ended the poem with such positive message about Change, which we encourage in the 4th issue of the magazine, in the following lines you wrote:
“Where forgiveness and peace, all blackness will replace.
And finally, those same fluttering ashes,
into warm waves of love will be transformed,
with wounds healed, and hearts touched by light.
Together, for the construction of a new smile.”
Amira Hassan: I consider myself an environmentalist and I love to see positive change regarding the issues that we are facing in the world such as climate change which is affecting our relationship with Nature. Would you consider yourself a nature lover? And what kind of change would you like to see in the world?
Cristina: Without a doubt, I am a nature lover. I love seeing flowery and green fields bathed by translucent lines of water. I love hugging ancient trees, smelling the scent of flowers and listening to birdsong. I love walking with my beloved little dog who is panting radiantly with the wind waving his ears and his nose moving sniffing natural smells. Yes, nature moves me.
I would like humanity to become aware of the objective of life’s journey: moral evolution, which is the only one that advocates spiritual evolution. That they become aware that the route of war, evil, envy, and scarcity is delay and loss of global collective evolution.
”Behold the destruction caused by you.
Repent yourself! You’re still on time.
With sincerity embrace all realms.
On a regenerative walk, evolution walks.”
Earth’s regeneration is in progress. Today’s children are more evolved and will be young people and adults with more collective, peaceful, and nature-preservation awareness. May wars end and peace make way. My respect for races, ages, and genders replace xenophobia, prejudice, and racism. May humanity become aware of the continuity of life, of cause and effect, and the damage caused by human imperfection. May materialism give way to charity, humanity, and love.
Amira Hassan: What advice would you give to our Younger generation in terms of handling environmental change, ways to have a loving relationship with nature, and tasks they add to their daily lives to support nature?
Cristina: They set an example with the respect shown for natural things, which begins first of all at each one’s home.
Sensitivity, respect, and awareness that everything and everyone is related. A well cared for nature will revert to a better-supported society with a higher morality. Stones, plants, animals are spiritual essences in evolution and, when better treated and loved, they will contribute more to a positive futuristic terrestrial atmosphere.
Please follow Cristina on her social media accounts, and you can view her artworks on her website.