An Intern’s Diary: Guest Post from Alejandra Gotera

I’m a Studio Arts major on my third year of college. I’ve always been interested in the inner workings of the art world, and curious about what it must be like to work in a museum. I applied for an internship at the USFCAM and thankfully I got it, however the best part is that they told me I would get to work directly with the artist Sandra Cinto as she installed her work for the museum’s newest exhibitions: Histórias/Histories: Contemporary Art from Brazil and Sandra Cinto: Chance and Necessity. You can imagine how excited I was, I haven’t met many accomplished artists besides my professors and now I had the chance to work with one.

Here’s how it all happened.

First meeting: Tuesday, Oct 20th, 2015

I was invited to assist an Intro meeting with Sandra Cinto. She came to Tampa to do a special project with Graphicstudio, in addition to meet with the CAM staff to talk about her work and what she wanted to do regarding her installation. I was pretty much speechless; they were all sitting around asking questions to Sandra (who by the way is such a sweet woman and incredibly talented artist) and working out the details with the ease of years of practice. I left that meeting happier than ever and thinking January couldn’t come fast enough.

Day 1: Monday, Jan 11th, 2016

Today was my first day as an intern at CAM, they are working on the installation of the pieces now. I met the artist Caio Reisewitz, a very talented Brazilian photographer and part of the exhibition. I learned he came here to work on his collage, a huge five foot long composition. I can’t wait until he’s done to see it. Then I was reintroduced to Sandra, she brought three extremely large canvases rolled up for the people at CAM to stretch. So there we were waiting for the crew to come, sitting on the floor and talking about art. After a while we finally got to stretching her paintings, it took us about three hours to get one right because they were so big; there is a lot of trial and error. I learned so much and it was only the first day.

Day 2: Wednesday, Jan 13th, 2016

I got to the museum while Sandra and Caio were having lunch. I sat with them and they gave me a lot of insight in what it means to be a professional artist, along with advice for young emerging ones. They told me about their studies, how they started their careers; to study and research a lot. They also said it is important to be passionate about my work, that they are about theirs and would keep doing it until the end. I just absorbed it all, it is not every day you get to sit and get advice from two seasoned artists. After lunch we were told Sandra’s prints had arrived; she had been working on them the last time she came with the people from Graphicstudio. It was nice to see how she looked over every single one of them, taking in every detail and signing them. The fun thing about Sandra is that as she worked she would tell us about her art, what inspires her and why she does the things she does. She and Caio also talk a lot about Brazil and life there; it’s always interesting hearing about new places.

Cinto 1Sandra Cinto, Chance and Necessity, 2016. Installation view.

Day 3: Friday, Jan 15th, 2016

After a week of hard work, everything is finally set for the exhibition. I wish I had been able to come in to help every day, but I do need my classes as well! Today is the symposium with the artists. Noel Smith, the curator, talked about the reasoning behind the show, to expose us to Brazilian culture and the talent within it. Sandra and Caio talked about their work. It was extremely interesting.

At the opening everything looks amazing. There’s Brazilian music playing on the background, lots of people admiring the art works. Some stop to talk to the artists while others just look around in contentment. It was so good to see the end result of all of our hard work.

The CAM crew along with both Sandra and Caio are some of the best people I’ve ever met. Not only did I have lots of fun while working here, but I also learned plenty that will help me along the way. I couldn’t be any happier.

Alejandra Gotera
BFA Undergraduate, Studio Art
School of Art and Art History
University of South Florida

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