When I began to color in coloring books, my sister said, "You don't color people's faces."
I ignored her. I colored pink faces pink, brown faces, black faces , purple faces. People are not all white, nor all black. We are all people of color.
In second grade my teacher asked my class to paint landscapes.
At home we had a painting by Tía Marta. It was of a river in the night, the moon reflecting on it. I decided to paint my version. Hadn't Picasso imitated other artists such as Matisse and Velazquez successfully? Why not me.
My river zigzagged down, like black cloth cut with pinking shears. The moon had ripped the river in half, its pale-yellow rays zigzagging, too.
"What's that?" my classmates asked horrified.
I tried to explain.
"It's ugly!" they said.
Wasn't that what Pablo Picasso's friends said of Les Demoiselles d'Avignon?
I should have kept my landscape.