//Watercolourist, illustrator and muralist
Photograph: Clara Sanabria @pina.foto
Zulay Contreras, watercolourist, illustrator and muralist was born in Cúcuta, Norte de Santander.
A fashion designer by profession, her focus on art began during a work stay in China when her boss asked her to paint some murals in his workspace. When she finished, she had to return to her job as a teacher, but this was no longer enough for her. She was forced to return to Colombia due to the pandemic and thus began her career as a watercolourist, practising and painting every day. The orders piled up and she illustrated the book ¿Y los vegetales pa' cuando? (What about the vegetables?) written by a nutritionist and a paediatrician and which is now in its second edition.
After this came more books and projects with municipalities and schools in other countries, independent art and murals in restaurants in the city and family homes. She expanded to other cities such as Bogotá and Medellín.
El Boga Residence
Painting plants that heal is a project focused on giving value to the cultural tradition, beliefs and stories of the locals. The result from this research will take the form of cards with watercolour illustrations containing information related by the momposinos themselves to help others to heal. A final exhibition of the artist's work will be on display.