At the March 2016, Art Exhibition and Book Fair, I learned that Luciana Essenziale is so much more than the owner of Oasi Apartments where she is a well-respected businesswoman and entrepreneur on Caye Caulker, Belize.
One of the main reasons she came to Caye Caulker was because of another passion….diving. She started out as a dive instructor and worked as a tour guide. One thing led to another, and soon after, she began her B&B and has built a tremendous business for herself.
Once you get to know her, it’s easy to see that she is a passionate person and loves life!
Why then, should I have been surprised to find that she is an accomplished artist with tremendous talent?!
Before coming to the Caye, she spent her life teaching art and making a living as an artist in Italy and Peru.
Thinking back on her childhood in Italy, she remembers doing a natura morta in oil, and realizing that she had raw talent. That realization fueled a passion within her that launched a long career in the world of art.
During the course of fifteen years, she worked as director of art in an Italian advertising agency during the day. In the evenings, she did commissioned illustrations and murals in private homes.
After leaving Italy, she studied sculpture at the Academy of Bellas Artes, in San Marcos, Peru. She also sought private instruction in the art of ceramic and pottery.
As a child, one of her fondest memories was that of her grandmother telling her the story of The Vergine Gorinda. To honor her, she did an acrylic on canvas and a plaster ceramic sculpture of what she imagined The Vergine Gorinda to be.
She also did a Cubist style pencil on wood during that period, and I have to say that it was among my favorites; a married couple’s familiarity with each other is captured perfectly…a happy couple at home, complete with a purring feline!
Upon moving to Caye Caulker, she studied wood carving under the tutelage of Moran Isabel, a master in the art of carving. Luciana’s wood carvings capture the essence of her subjects. When you study them, they tell you their story.
She has touched so many people with her kind and generous spirit.
We’re very lucky to have her here on the Caye with us!