Sun Sentinel City Link

Catalina Jaramillo: Mother’s keeper

By Colleen Dougher

When Catalina Jaramillo’s You Are Always Here opened last month, the floorboards of the exhibition room at Dimensions Variable were lined with craft kits, hair brushes, old View-Master discs, piles of folded clothes and dozens of jigsaw puzzles that had been assembled, broken down and returned to their boxes with many pieces still interlocked. Given the nature of the scene, someone who had just walked in off the street would be forgiven for asking, “How much for the puzzles?”

But a closer inspection of the room — which has a flowery, latch-hook rug and a pair of worn slippers at its center — reveals the personal nature of this exhibit. The objects belonged to Jaramillo’s mother, Yolanda Phillips de Jaramillo, who on Jan. 26, 2010, lost her 10-year battle with cancer. A quote from Buddhist monk Nichiren Daishonen hangs on one wall. “Even though I cannot see you,” it begins, “I am certain that your heart is here.”