Franklin Piaguaje was raised among the Siona, one of the 102 indigenous communities that inhabit the Colombian territory. An indigenous man who from a very young age was instilled with the value of care and conservation of nature. Franklin was educated with a sensitivity to issues that affect the country at large, training that compelled him get involved in protests and mobilizations in defense of different struggles such as education and territorial rights.

In 2012, when he was 14 years old, he began to experiment with sculptures in plaster, clay, and porcelain, materials that he learned to handle thanks to tutorials he found on the internet. Soon after, he also began making drawings with with oil paint, charcoal, and pencils, though it would take several years before he took to the streets with his artwork.

It was in 2016 that Franklin decided to start creating work in a more serious way and with greater social commitment, addressing issues such as childhood, violence, and the reality of the country he lived in. Together with a group of friends he painted murals where there was political advertising, sometimes covering it with artwork related to education, violence against women, rights of ethnic groups, and protection of flora and fauna.

Franklin has stated that the concepts he deals with in his work vary, according to what he is experiencing at certain times. In addition to expressing his indigenous heritage with pride, Franklin paints portraits of artists and fictional characters as superheroes in his spare time, something that serves as an exercise for other projects.

You can follow Franklin Piaguaje’s work on his Instagram account here: