Memories Blurred With Fiction by Alexandria Canchola

“Memories Blurred with Fiction” delves into the female perspective of a Cuban immigrant, with my grandmother as the central character. This narrative aims to illuminate her life, thoughts, and challenges as a woman who left everything behind in pursuit of the American dream.

Abuela embodies an era when women had limited options, dedicating her life to being a devoted wife and mother. Arriving in America with minimal knowledge of the language, she clung to her cultural roots as Grandpa swiftly adapted to American life. Her unwavering commitment to her role raises questions about assimilation and responsibility, themes explored in this piece.

Memories often resemble fiction when seen through the lens of time and the imperfections of human recollection. To capture Abuela’s story, this work blends personal observation with painted scenes of her life. This work explores the deep connection between memory and possessions, with objects capturing a character’s essence. It showcases the power of belongings in expressing our true selves. A few of the works examine the interplay between words and images, using letters as design elements and symbols of communication to emphasize their significance. Color is used to enhance the narrative, to do more than create visual delight, but implemented to instill itself into the minds of the audience establishing a certain mood for each piece. The intensity of certain colors paired with the overwhelming use of just one or a few colors creates a memorable visual link to the work. The color palette used subverts the viewer’s idea of emotion; centering on themes such as nostalgia, bittersweetness, and more specifically longing and showcasing these emotions in the bright powerful hues in which we feel them.

ALEXANDRIA CANCHOLA designs, illustrates, and creates immersive large-scale installations that are inspired by narrative, color, letterforms, and filmmaking. She has worked for publications, small businesses and non-profits in many roles working to solve problems creatively so ideas can come to life. Canchola has a BA from the University of Texas at Austin and an MFA in 2D Design from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. She has completed residencies at Otis College of Art and Design and Zea Mays Printmaking. Her design and illustration work have received awards from American Illustration, American Advertising Federation, and International Design Awards. Canchola is currently an Assistant Professor for the Graphic Design program at Texas A&M University–Corpus Christi eagerly working to assist her students in their quest for knowledge so they may fully understand the power they wield as designers in communicating ideas that change everything.