Funded! This project was successfully funded on July 3, 2012.

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A painting expedition to find the people and places that define Argentina and bring us hope, wonder and inspiration.

El Proyecto en Español: http://antrese.com/un-retrato-de-la-argentina

A Portrait of Argentina is a cultural portrait of my new home.

My Story:

I am a fine artist, a California girl, a city girl who spent weekends outdoors and vacations in the backcountry. I'm a little bit of a geek with a past career making art for video games. So how does a girl like me end up living on the other side of the equator?

Years ago, I did a semester with NOLS, the National Outdoor Leadership School. We spent 3 months climbing mountains and kayaking through the fjords on the Chilean side of Patagonia. I thought I would never have the opportunity to come back to South America so I took the time to explore other countries.

I returned to the states, grateful for the experience but sure I would never go back. But life had other plans... An Argentine friend of mine had always insisted that my life was not complete until I had experienced an Argentine wedding. So when her brother got married, a group of us went down for the "life changing experience". Little did I know. On that trip, my friend introduced me to someone special, and I fell in love.

Again, I returned to the states. My rational side declared the idea of a long-distance love ludicrous-- best be practical and return to “normal life”.  So I did. I focused on my work and tried to forget. The heart though, is crafty, patient, and insistent. It refuses to be ignored and conspires to get what it wants. In the end, my heart won.

So here I am, having just experienced my own Argentine wedding, living in the country I never thought I would see again. I left Los Angeles thinking I was prepared for the culture shock. I was a seasoned traveler, after all, and knew what I was getting myself into. But leaving a city of over 3 million for a small town of barely 5,000; learning a new language and adapting to a new culture changed my life in ways I never anticipated.    

As I struggle still with the culture shock I make sense of it the best way I know how: painting.

Inspired by love, this project intends to seek out and share the stories of people and places that inspire hope in the human spirit. People who inspire us to reach higher, to be better than we are.

My goal is to paint Argentina from an individual, national and world perspective. As I paint portraits of the people I meet, I’ll listen to their stories and then paint en plein-aire, the scenes from their daily life; the places the nation is most proud of, and locations familiar to the world.

This is a true cultural portrait of Argentina. In the two years that I have lived here, I’ve noticed a deep sense of resignation in people ‘ asi es la vida’ (‘that’s life’), a feeling that ‘it is what it is’ and you just accept it. There is also another side that refuses to give up. A side that makes something beautiful out of nothing. A fierce pride and a determination to incite change, to be the best. This duality fascinates me. Some quietly do their thing, creating a small but powerful circle of impact. Others are more visible, their work demands it. I will seek out Argentina’s cultural leaders, the innovators who dedicate their lives to creating positive change: Scientists, Engineers, Dancers, Actors, Athletes, Musicians, Teachers, Environmentalists, and yes, Artists. These people inspire hope. I want to hear their stories and share them with you.

Starting from the center of Argentina and radiating outward, I’ll travel through the cities, into the countryside, across the vineyards, into the arid deserts and all the way down to the glaciers. About 15,600 miles in all, a good portion of which is on dirt roads in remote areas.

This project will be funded with donations from people like you. Even a dollar helps, but kick in a little more and you will be rewarded with original sketches, like the ones pictured below, or with an oil painting created on site,  “en Plein Air”.

Yes, this is an ambitious project, but not impossible. All donations big and small make a difference. Please do what you can to help me reach my goal.

Kickstarter is all or nothing: if I don’t reach my goal, no-one is charged, and I don’t get a dime.

It’s a big country. I will need a little help getting around. Fortunately, my new husband has a lifetime of experience traveling solo as well as guiding others to the far corners and the topmost peaks of this country. Some segments I will be on my own. My husband will be with me on the longer, more technically challenging/ remote parts of the trip. 

The Plan: 

We live in the province of Córdoba, which is in the center of the country. Most highways radiate outwards from this hub. Over the first month and a half, I will paint Córdoba, and the province (and city) of Buenos Aires. Next, I will follow the 3 main highways towards Bolivia, Paraguay, and Brazil, respectively. Then, I will hit wine country: Mendoza and the surrounding provinces (the yellow ones on the map below). The final segment will take me past Bariloche, through Patagonia all the way to Tierra del Fuego “the end of the earth”.

Between each segment, I will return to my studio to finalize the paintings while the experience is still fresh in my mind, and then re-supply and head back out on the road.

The whole project will be about 8 months; approximately half on the road, and half in the studio.

Where does the money go & what can you expect in return?

The biggest expense, by far, is travel and logistics. By my estimation, I’ll need about 43 tanks of gas. I know gas prices have been making the news in the U.S. but in Argentina gas is nearly $7 US dollars per gallon. Ouch.

The goal of $25,000 covers materials: paint, canvas, brushes, etc. It pays for my studio space, travel, gas, car maintenance, cheap hotels, lots of empanadas (Argentine equivalent of Top Ramen or PB& J sandwiches), and the bare essentials to make it through a 15,600 mile road trip. About 15- 20% will go towards preparing and shipping rewards. 10 % is split between kickstarter and bank-fees. 

FAQ

  • Yes! Backers will be able to choose a landscape, portrait, whatever your fancy. I will post paintings as they are finished. In the event that two backers want the same painting, priority goes to the person who pledged first.

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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    5 backers

    You, my friend, deserve a special thank-you. I truly appreciate every penny of support. As a token of my gratitude, I will send you a digital version of one of my paintings for your computer screen. And of course, a thank-you note.

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  • Pledge $15 or more
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    12 backers

    You get 'A Portrait of Argentina' ebook: Paintings and drawings from the road. This will include all the preparatory color sketches plus the final oil paintings from the trip.

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    14 backers

    Hand drawn postcard sent to you from Argentina while Im on the road, plus an ebook of all the paintings from the series. The postcards will be mailed as I finish them; the ebook will be delivered when the project is complete. :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: Postal dibujado a mano. Enviada desde Argentina mientras estoy en el camino, además de un libro electrónico de todos los cuadros de la serie. Las postales se enviarán por correo durante el proyecto, el libro electrónico será entregado cuando el proyecto esté terminado.

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    13 backers

    A Portrait of Argentina ebook plus a second tutorial ebook filled with painting techniques, color theory, the art of the quick-sketch and more!

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  • Pledge $35 or more
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    12 backers

    Pack of 10 postcards depicting paintings from the series plus both ebooks. :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: Pack de 10 tarjetas postales que representan las pinturas de la serie, además los dos libros electrónicos.

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  • Pledge $50 or more
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    26 backers

    $50 gets you an original sketch from the series: a small painting (aproximately 3 X 3" water color/ gouache on paper).

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    25 backers

    Mini Oil painting. These minis are somewhere in the range of 6 x 6 inches (15 x 15cm) or 6 x 9 inches (15 x 23cm). Usually done as a quick color study, they tend to have vibrant colors and loose brush strokes. PinturaMini al óleo. Estos están en el rango de 15 x 15 cm o de 15 x 23 cm. Usualmente se realiza como un estudio de color rápido, tienden a tener colores vivos y trazos sueltos de pincel.

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    10 backers All gone!

    Homage to Dwight. Dwight Harmon was one of my favorite Art Center Instructors. He encouraged unbounded creativity, unrestricted materials, and a hefty dose of humor. I will create 10 pieces to honor his memory, using whatever materials I find along the road. They will most likely be a collage of sorts. You might find a reference to Enzo or Vegas in there somewhere. Cheers to you, Dwight!

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  • Pledge $150 or more
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    10 backers All gone!

    Early Bird Special!! No Joke: You get an oil painting from the series (8 x 10 or larger). This is a deep discount off my normal selling price, but I'm happy to give it to you. Your support of this project means a lot to me.

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  • Pledge $300 or more
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    6 backers

    8 x 10 oil painting. First come, first serve: backers can choose from available paintings based on order in which pledges are received.

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  • Pledge $450 or more
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    4 backers

    9 x12 original oil painting. Backers can choose from available paintings based on order in which pledges are received.

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  • Pledge $500 or more
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    1 backer

    Skype Portrait of YOU ...or whoever you can get to sit in front of the computer while I paint. All you need is a computer with a video camera and Skype. I will paint your portrait while we virtually hang out. You get the portrait plus a video of our session. One sitter only. Outside the U.S. or Argentina, please add $30 for shipping.

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  • Pledge $1,000 or more
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    3 backers Limited (2 left of 5)

    24 x 40" original oil painting. Limited number,

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  • Pledge $3,000 or more
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    2 backers

    Collectors who have purchased my work before know what a deal they are getting with this offer. The $1,000 painting above is a steal, so I couldn't offer unlimited quantities. But for a $3,000 donation, you still get 50% off the normal price for a 24 x 40" painting. Plus you get a 9 x 12" painting and the mini color studies of both your pieces. You also get the ebooks and the post card pack. Your support and belief in this project means so much to me, I 'm happy to offer this. :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: Colectores quien han comprado mi trabajo antes saben que están recibiendo un trato con esta oferta. Premie de $1,000 es un robo, por eso no podía ofrecer cantidades ilimitadas. Sin embargo, para una donación de $ 3,000, usted todavía consigue el 50% de descuento del precio normal para una pintura de 60 x 100cm. Además, usted recibe una pintura de 23 x 30cm; los estudios de color en miniatura de dos de sus piezas; más los ebooks y el paquete de tarjetas postales. Su apoyo y confianza en este proyecto significa mucho para mí, estoy feliz de ofrecer este.

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  • Pledge $6,000 or more
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    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    ::::::::::::::::::::::: The Angel Award :::::::::::::::::::::: A 40 x 60" painting, one of my treasured moleskine sketchbooks filled with notes and drawings from the trip, two 9 x 12 paintings from the series plus a skype portrait of you ( or a subject of your choice). ::::::::::::::::::::::: El Premio Ángel :::::::::::::::::::::: Un pintura de 100 x 152cm, uno de mis preciados cuadernos moleskine, llenos de notas y dibujos del viaje, dos 23 x 30cm pinturas de la serie, además de un retrato de Skype de usted (o un tema de su elección).

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Funding period

- (35 days)