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Artist Profile: Mahlija Florendo

JUNE 29, 2021

Artist Profile: Mahlija Florendo

JUNE 29, 2021

Mahlija Florendo is an Indigenous artist painting and handcrafting pieces based on her traditional homelands rooted in the Indigenous Tribes of Northern California and Oregon. Her work is inspired by Indigenous people and their fight for Indigenous sovereignty, including social justice and the environment. She runs her own business, Indigenous Womxn Art, while also attending college.

Name:

Mahlija Florendo

Where do you live?

Eugene, Oregon

Favorite bird?

I drew a toucan as my favorite bird because they are so interesting and colorful.

What do you seek to communicate in your work?

When I make my work, I want it to be a voice for myself and other Indigenous Women and Femmes fighting for the rights of Indigenous people and the environment. My art is my language. 

How has nature been a source of inspiration for you?

This earth is a lifegiver to people. Just like the matriarchs. I love to paint the earth, and its wellbeing is everything to me and my culture and something to be heard. I like to give it a voice with my work.

Tell us about your most memorable bird experience.

I love hummingbirds and whenever I see them I take them as a sign. When I was hurting during a very heavy depression as a teen, I was seeing them surround me outside all the time. I felt like they were trying to help me in some way and I thank them for bringing me some form of inspiration/healing to a much better place now. I still think they're trying to tell me things when I see them. They are healing birds. 

See more of Mahlija's work on her Instagram page.

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