Principally self-educated artist, her background is in administration and business, after deciding on a change of career she sort to follow her dreams of developing her artistic practice. Before embarking on her travels she studied Art in Paris in 2014, then she set off in search of inspiration for her art work, capturing every country through drawings and watercolors (art that could fit in her rucksack) and then embarked on our residency program where she could realise these sketches on a large scale and gain more inspiration from Chiang Mai too.

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Maria Jose Rodriguez Larrain spent her time on the residency producing a new series of works inspired by her encounters whilst traveling around Asia. She is an explorer of the truth and of the universe. The art is the highest thing that she feels she can do to give to the world.

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Her works involve people and the ‘souls’ that had touched her’s in these brief encounters, where she sees her spirit painting other spirits. Each of us is a soul that travels. Our body may fade but our soul is always alive. Art is a magic window that allows our inner worlds to connect.

Though her painting she presents to the audience a glimpse of both her soul and the subjects in the paintings. Maria visited the following countries to gather inspiration for these works: Indonesia, Thailand, Laos and Cambodia.

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The canvases are chaotic and poetic, eccentric lines and colours merge together to tell stories and experiences of the artist, presenting ideas that we are all universally connected by our souls.


Surface Arts curated an exhibition of these new paintings titled Connnecting Souls at Rumpueng Art Space. The pieces were left untitled as the exhibition invited audience participation to title each piece. The participants wrote down words that best described each painting and gave meaning to the work, the artist would choose from these later on. ‘Let your soul connect, so together we complete the paintings’ was the invite.

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