NEW InsideOut Art Show Participating Artist, 2017!
Martina Olea, a Mixtec Indian from Oaxaca, Mexico, served 26 years at the California Institution for Women (CIW). Upon parole in 2011, Martina was deported and currently lives in Tijuana where she attends Bible College and ministers to the poorest of the poor. While still incarcerated, Martina made and sold her exquisite beaded jewelry and crocheted items. In fact, she used the proceeds from her hobbycrafts sales to pay for an accredited high school diploma program, graduating with an “A” average even though English is her third language.
The only tools available in prison for assembling the jewelry components were beading needles, eyebrow tweezers, and nail clippers, but she has now happily added needle-nosed pliers to her tool kit. Martina still individually stitches high-quality seed beads and Swarovski crystals into each butterfly, hummingbird, owl, and flower jewelry set, as well as in the more traditional chandelier-style earrings and pendants.
A multi-talented woman, Martina also crochets elegant lace tablecloths. Each one takes months to complete.
Necklace & Earrings: Butterfly