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Rosa Murillo 

Mixed media artist

For Rosa Murillo, the world is her canvas and she's ready to leave her mark. As a mixed media artist, she uses a little bit of everything for art -- acrylic, colored pencil and more. She will be featured in an exhibit at Café Mia in Birkdale Village in Huntersville July 1.

Murillo studied to be an architect in Mexico, but painting distracted her and she is now a full-time artist. "I've made some designs, but that was three years ago," she says. "I'm more interested in the illustration part of architecture."

She likes to tell stories with her collages, using old antique letters and used stamps -- items that have already served their purpose. "Once I take it and put it in a painting, it gets a new meaning."

One project that she is catering to every week is called "Found Art," where every Tuesday she leaves a piece of her own art out in the world for someone else to pick up. One example of found art was an Altoid box designed as an iPod.

"When I first came to North Carolina, I felt displaced. I started making found art pieces to connect to my new home, to leave a little bit of me here."

The Found Art project was also an experiment for Murillo. "We are brought up to respect other people's property, not to touch things that don't belong to you. I'm trying to challenge that. When you are a child, your eyes are very open, always looking for new things, experimenting and looking for things around you. And then when you grow up, you grow out of that"

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