Growing up in Miami during the '60's, I was inundated with Cuban culture. My school was bilingual, in the true sense of the word-- half of our day was taught in English and half in Spanish. During the Spanish half, my name was Pilar. Even my parents took to calling me that. Having Cuban friends provided an opportunity to see another world very different from the middle-class Jewish one I inhabited. The gooey meringue icing on birthday cakes, the bloody crucifixes, the passionate hatred of Fidel Castro were all fascinating to me.
Linked by my childhood, I am still mesmerized by people and places that are fundamentally different from the norm of my world. I want to capture--or sometimes create--the exotic, lush, and colorful that I often find missing from my muted Boston suburb.