I was born in 1952, in Catavi, Bolivia, during the Bolivian Revolution. My family immigrated to New York City when I was three. Perhaps because I am an immigrant, bilingual and bicultural, I have a broader perspective of possibilities when it comes to my artistic choices. So, when I saw the Apple II computer, in 1979, I decided to “go for it,” buy the computer, and use it as a tool to create art. Buying a computer was not an obvious choice; I had barely passed Algebra 2 and failed logic. In 1979, there were only a handful of software programs available for the Apple II, so I had to acquire the skills to program and contend with the hardware. It was the most challenging intellectual endeavor of my life. I was motivated by the computer’s potential to create, process and animate images. In 1981, I coauthored one the first graphics programs for the Apple II, The Designer’s Toolkit. It was published by Apple, Inc. in 1982. There is documentation of the process of development on my website: huge-pixels.com. This early work is archived at the Strong Museum, in Rochester, New York.
From 1992 through 2000, I worked on a multimedia, interactive CD-ROM, Sangre Boliviana, Bolivian Blood. Using video, voice-over, music and interactivity, it addressed many of the conflicts I felt about my identity.By the time I finished the work, I had found a “place to stand,” where I had come to terms with being both Bolivian and American. Sangre Boliviana was shown in museums, film shows and galleries, in the United States, Europe and Latin America. It is archived at the National Library of France, in Paris.
Over almost four decades, the focus of my art work has been my collaboration with the computer. Equally, I have considered how the epic changes in technology are altering our culture, our personal communications and our creative process.