Meet the Indian visual artist who portrays Goan’s heritage through painting

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Clarice Vaz is an Indian visual artist, who runs her own artwork website. She is one of the best painters in Goa, specializing in syringe painting, fluid painting, spin painting, and abstract art. Originally from Saligao, Goa, Clarice loves experimenting with colors, textures, gels and mediums, in addition to getting my hands dirty! She paints with non-traditional tools. She never follows any artist’s rule book as she believes that art can emerge from almost anything.

ItsGoa team caught up with her and put her in the spotlight.
Humans of Goa is our original and official series that shares inspiring stories from the life of Goan. Humans of Goa is made for and composed of Goans.

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If someone asked you, “What do you do for a living, what would you say?”

I am a housewife who enjoys painting, creating visual stories, and serving.


What was that moment when you decided that “this is it!” I want to become a good Indian visual artist ”?

When I saw our Goan heritage change after decades of Liberation during home visits as a nurse in the 90s, I decided to document everything with pen on paper and brush on canvas.

Image credit – Clarice Vaz

A little about your models. The people you admire when you paint?

I am original in my work and paint with my soul. I have mentors and friends who guide me but I have no role model because I like to make my own way. It’s easier than following someone and being in competition.

artist-life story
Image credit – Clarice Vaz

Any inspiring moment you remember in your life that changed everything …

Yes, the tragic death of my 20 year old eldest son suddenly in his sleep from a rare, life changing, undiagnosed heart disease and I do everything in his memory therefore I do not miss him.

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Image credit – Clarice Vaz

What was the biggest challenge in pursuing this full-time career? And how did you overcome it?

I paint, write or photograph because I love to do it. And so, every day, I wake up doing what I love. I don’t work for money because my family takes good care of me. My full-time career was simply a hobby that turned into a cathartic journey and once I got professional recognition I started to compete with myself using my talents to help others in memory of my deceased son.

I paint, write or photograph because I love to do it. And so, every day, I wake up doing what I love. I don’t work for money because my family takes good care of me. My full-time career was simply a hobby that turned into a cathartic journey and once I got professional recognition I started to compete with myself using my talents to help others in memory of my deceased son.

The luxury I have is that my career is a HOBBY! That’s why I like “challenges” and don’t be afraid.

best-paintings-of-india
Image credit – Clarice Vaz

Childhood memories you would like to share? Something that sparked the love for painting?

I’ve always loved to draw but I’ve been told that ‘Artists don’t survive. You need a skill in hand ‘! So I chose to become a nurse instead because at that time Mother Teresa was my inspiration. I studied at St. Martha’s College of Nursing in Bangalore and worked there and briefly in Mumbai before becoming a full time mother to my young boys by choice. I only started painting and writing visual stories when they came out of Goa to continue their education. Later I started to paint especially in memory of my son Craig Vaz so that I could use the profits for my social work in his memory.

best-goan-artist
Image credit – Claric Vaz

Who is the person you would like to meet from the past? And what would you ask him?

I would like to meet my little self and I would like to say that life was not that hard after all. I am almost 57 years old today and have witnessed some bittersweet moments. Knowing who we are is fundamental in life and this is what I would like to tell everyone because it is NEVER taught to us anywhere at school, home, church or work. They tell us what to do and how to do but no one tells us who we are! How worthy, whole and loved we are already! From there, we can do anything!

Indian-painter-interview
Image credit – Clarice Vaz

If you could turn back time, what would you say to your young self?

I would teach and train my young self to claim its worth. I don’t want to be the best Indian visual artist, I just want to tell stories to the best of my ability.

indian-visual-designer
Image credit – Clarice Vaz

Can you write us a few lines here on the theme of “Life is art”?

If you can accept that every time you think a thought and say a word you are creating your reality, you are painting your future, you are creating your own life. The choice of colors on the easel of your soul is important. It’s a full time job! I am also aware of the colors with which I would not like to paint. I like that a lot of people like the painting of my life, my actions, my personality, what I believe, what I feel. It’s nice.

indian-artist
Image credit – Clarice Vaz

What role have family and friends played? A quick incident that you remember when your family or friends helped you overcome an obstacle or a challenge in life?

It was a big challenge when my family found out that I was a creative person. They had never seen this side of me. Creativity takes long hours of work and as my successes have started to show, they have accepted the fact that I was indeed gifted with a little talent and today I can freely do what I love. they support me

Indian top painter
Image credit – Clarice Vaz

What was the feedback from people (negative and positive) and who supported you the most?

Honestly, I don’t consider people’s opinions but I listen to them. Ultimately, art is self-expression and it’s something so inclusive that after all, art only resides in the eyes of the beholder!
I have an honest mentor / friend who took a look at my work in 2014 and immediately knew I was talented. Having been trained at Sir JJ School of Art, her belief in my work changed my perspective on LIFE and as a nurse, I became a full time painter only to experiment with the tools of my trade, that of using a syringe for painting! She encouraged me all along.
She is a senior art director / graphic designer having worked for large companies like FCB Speer, DDB Mudra, Ogilvy, Walt Disney and more. A humble and simple soul, who has simply walked around my house to check on my work. She bought my first work of art as a professional. Her name is Bina Nayak. She has also been part of my visual story books as an editor and designer.

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Image credit – Clarice Vaz

What legacy do you want to leave? And for whom?

I am just a soul traveling through life. A little of the big Whole. My actions will be my inheritance. To be an admired Indian visual artist fills me with pride.

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Image credit – Clarice Vaz

You can view an excerpt from this conversation on ItsGoa’s Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/p/CUrQAwkDdsA/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link. Humans of Goa is our original and official series that shares stories from the life of Goan. “Humans of Goa” celebrates the spirit of every Goan.

Use #humansofgoa to feature your story and follow ItsGoa for more inspiring stories.



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