The Little Prince as Inspiration

The Little Prince as Inspiration at Bihl Haus Arts, San Antonio 


All of us experience feelings of alienation and vulnerability during life’s transitions.   During my childhood, my family sent me from the Caribbean Island of Haiti to Quebec, Canada.  Here the Catholic nuns taught me.  At age fourteen, living in a foreign land, I read The Little Prince for a class assignment.   From the beginning, the Little Prince gave me strength, understanding and a vision.  We formed a life-long bond.


Later in life, I turn to the noble childhood perspective of the Little Prince to walk the path of inspiration.


I understand, one must go back to a childlike mind to make things happen.  So, when it came to carving my version of the Little Prince, the character was so embodied in my psyche and, like Michelangelo, I just carved away the excess of material to release him from a single piece of oak: my hero was born.


Be also aware that there is a deep connection between risk taking and creativity.  One cannot repeat again and again the same pattern and expect a different result.  We need to be challenged to crystalize the eternity of a moment.

Marika sining the Haitian song she sung while carving "Grace."

Marika sining the Haitian song she sung while carving “Grace.”

The Little Prince with the Rose and the Fox

The Little Prince with the Rose and the Fox


Tranquil-Essence: A 50th Wedding Anniversary Celebration


To celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary a couple commissioned a sculpture.  What an honor it is for me to be part of such a momentous and personal occasion.  Such an honor and trust does raise the bar of creativity and excellence.  Tranquil-Essence is made of pecan and has a mesquite base.



IMG_4174 IMG_4452 IMG_4471 IMG_4501 IMG_4507 IMG_4522

The Cross for The Road to Emmaus



From the beginning, the creation of the sculpture revolved around the question “Who is to hold the cross?”  We tend to see the death of Jesus through Michelangelo’s Pieta, the portrayal of  Mary, the mother, holding the lifeless body of her Son.  But in the reality of this journey, we are closer to the weaknesses of Mary Magdalene than to the holiness of the Mother of Jesus.

Seguin sculptor gives lessons on the road

From the Seguin Gazette Enterprise

Posted: Wednesday, April 27, 2011 12:00 am | Updated: 6:15 pm, Tue Apr 26, 2011.

Staff reports |

EL PASO – Sculptor Marika Bordes recently made presentations to university and high school students at the request of the University of Texas at El Paso.

“When Marika talks with students about how she creates her sculptures, they literally lean forward to get closer to her and learn from her as they are drawn in and captured by her passion,” said Dr. Richard Padilla, vice president for student affairs at UTEP. “The pictures of her in the presentation, a petite woman wielding a chainsaw, attacking large blocks of wood while making the first cuts in creating a sculpture, instantly challenge and inspire the students to see themselves in new ways.

“Marika is a great role model. Like the sculptures she creates, she is elegant in her simplicity, inspires others to see beyond boundaries, and she is always full of surprises,” Padilla said.

The university students learned about creativity, teaching methods, conceptual sculpture and the art of living.

Marika offered some advice for the future teachers of Texas children: “Along your path, as an artist, share ideas; as a teacher, encourage each creative spirit; as a creative person, continue to learn and appreciate life’s lessons.”

Riverside High School students from the Ysleta Independent School District and Chapin High School students from the El Paso Independent School District also heard presentations by Marika.

“As an artist, I am here today to open the doors to the art world, challenging you to enter it freely and without fear,” she told the students. “I also have the privilege to help demystify the art of making sculpture.”

Marika met Saturday afternoon, April 16, with more than 100 high school students participating in the Upward Bound program which provides fundamental support to participants in their preparation for college entrance.

The focus of the presentation was similar to the one for the high school classes, but it included an exhibit of Marika’s sculptures and tools.

Students came in small groups to the stage to view sculptures and ask questions about the art of sculpting, creativity and the business of art.

“When you take the next step on your journey, search for the unopened doors,” she told the students. “You have the keys. Do it with a clear and giving heart. Life is nothing but an offering.”

The presentations were made April 14-16 in El Paso.

© Copyright 2011, Seguin Gazette Enterprise, Seguin, TX

St. Brigid’s Cross- Chapel of the Guadalupe Regional Medical Center

The Guadalupe Regional Medical Center chose St. Brigid’s Cross for the chapel feeling that any chaplain would do well to model their ministry after the life of St. Brigid.  Much like St. Brigid, the chaplain often finds that the most sacred “chapel” is at the bedside of the sick and dying.  In those holy moments it is always the chaplain’s desire to bring love, peace and comfort through prayer and faith.  In the manner of St. Brigid, Chaplains often share God’s love by reaching out to the poor, to those in need and to those whose hearts are hurting.


Cross of St. Brigid

Commissioned by: Rev. Jeremy Roy

Designed and Created by artist: Marika Bordes

Assisted by: Col. Joe Saenz, USAF, Ret. and Howard Crunk


Cross of St. Brigid- detail


Eden Hill Communities Visits Marika

Eden Hill Communities of New Braunfels, TX came by to see Marika’s Gallery and Studio.  A good time was had by one and all as the saying goes.  The stay was fun, lively and informative.  There were a lot of questions and a wonderful exchange of ideas.  The Eden Hill plans to visit Marika’s art at the Guadalupe Regional Medical Center and to visit the gallery again!

Seguin Artist Selected for Prestigious Texas Tour

Seguin Daily News

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The art pieces, as well as the skills and talents used in creating these fine wood sculptures, will soon be available to all Texans. Artist Marika Bordes, of Seguin, has been selected to participate in the prestigious 2010-2011 Texas Touring Roster of the Texas Commission on the Arts. Bordes is one of only a handful of Texas artists who have been selected for the opportunity.

By Cindy Aguirre-Herrera

(Seguin) — Local Sculptor Marika Bordes is taking her art on the road. Bordes, a member of the Seguin Oakwood Art League and the Texas Society of Sculptors ,has been selected by the Texas Commission on the Arts to participate in its 2010-2011 Texas Touring Roster. Bordes is one of only 124 individuals and companies to receive the grant award.

By being chosen for the touring roster, the wood carving sculptor will receive the opportunity to offer presentations, demonstrations and workshops to adults and youth. Through these presentations, Bordes says she hopes to inspire people to appreciate the importance of art.

“It’s a great honor, although we applied for it, but after that when I knew about the process (and of ) getting in, I feel very blessed and honored to be with such a group of people. I do think by going all over to show people what we can do with wood, I will pass on the legacy that I received from my people to other people that will continue it,” said Bordes.

The state of Texas designed the Touring Arts Program to ensure that all Texans have the ability to enjoy performances and presentations in their own communities by what they call ‘outstanding Texas-based artists’.

“Artists on the Texas Touring Roster travel to communities across the state and perform in a variety of venues,” said Gary Gibbs, TCA executive director. “In addition to performances, they may also conduct workshops, master classes, residences, lecture-demonstrations or arts education components as a way to engage community residents. We are proud to offer the citizens of Texas access to such high-quality artistic talent.”

Gaye McElwain, director marketing and communications for the Texas Commission on the Arts, says Seguin should be proud of Bordes’ accomplishments thus far. She says selection for the touring list is limited to the elite and most creative artists and performance companies around.

“It is prestigious in the sense that those artists are going to be looked at by Texas presenters state wide to be brought into their communities to do workshops and exhibitions and performances — things of that type. So we at the Commission on the Arts want to make sure that the list that we are providing are all the highest quality, people who are good not only in terms of artistic product but that are also going to be a good addition to their community in terms of the way they can communicate about their artwork maybe do some educational outreach — things of that type,” said McElwain.

The Texas Commission on the Arts does not provide funds to artists in the Texas Touring Roster. Instead, TCA provides grants to arts presenters, schools, libraries, theatres and other non profits throughout Texas to help with the cost of bringing in companies and artists from the roster.

Bordes says what is particularly exciting for her is the opportunity to spread the word about Seguin as an arts destination.

“Here in Seguin we have so many talents and I’m experiencing it everyday. Actually, I have nine students, and we are going to have that exhibition in October. You are all going to see

how it is. The variety of talents and thought and creativity — I think we need people to know who we are in Seguin, and I don’t mean that I’m the best ambassador for it, but I will do my best to let people know who we are in Seguin and what we can do,” said Bordes.

Artists on this year’s Texas Touring Roster range from individual performing and visual artist to large performing arts companies.

Artistic disciplines include music, visual art, dance, theatre, storytelling, literary art and folk art.

Presentation at Texas Lutheran University

Please click on photo for an enlargement.

Many of the photos are the courtesy of Bil Sullivan:

Inspiration, Celebration and Passion …
Welcome to my world

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Thank you for being here. It is a real pleasure to share with you the fruit of my work and, I am deeply grateful to TLU for inviting me. A special thank you / goes to T. Paul Hernandez, Landa King, and the art students / who helped graciously in setting up the exhibition.

Once upon a time,
When I was 14 years old,
I read a book, and
Something extraordinary happened to me.
From that day,
It changed my way of seeing things,
It changed my life,
It gave me a vision.
A few sentences from
The Little Prince of: Antoine de St-Exupéry
Stayed with me to this day.
Thus it says:

“It is only with the heart
That one can see rightly;
What is essential
Is invisible for the eye”.

The sculptures you see before you hide a deep story of inspiration. In the mid 1990’s, I met a master carver who inspired me when he said: “Madam you can carve”. I was shocked and I was skeptical. One day, I went back to him with a set of tools and said: here I am; you said you would teach me isn’t it so? … Yes he did. For months, he stood by my side, passing on to me/ from earlier generations of Haitian sculptors the art of sculpting wood together with his love for this profession.

It’s been twelve years, since carving took me along as a disciple. Twelve years of discipline and labor. As a result, my sculptures are a reflection of my evolution through time and vision. They portray the sanctity of daily living which is a mix of happiness, / sensuality, / anger, and majesty.

When I am asked: How do I carve?
I say:
· I carve with my heart and my soul.
· I carve by instinct

Why do I carve?
· Because I want to share my dreams with others;
· But above all, because there is sacredness in what I do/ and I want to leave my sculptures as a legacy to celebrate life’s nobility.

For all these years, carving has become my true passion. Along the path I do encounter risks, frustration, and discouragement. Sculpting consumes my energies. At the same time it propels me forward. From the rising of the sun/ until the rising of the moon, mallet and chisel ring out against the intrinsic beauty of the wood and my inner spirit soars to new heights.

This partnership heals my mind and my spirit. / Whether mythology or religious beliefs have influenced me in the process,/ my sculptures portray / the inspiration for the unusual and the unexpected./ These poets/ take us to a world/ where mythology and reality / merge into a joyful dance;/ where ancient gods / provide succor and sustenance./

One tends to think that the sculptures speak for me. / No, they do not. / They speak their own language. / They speak to you. / You hear them. / You hear them in your own way. You travel with them / far into your imagination. / With an inner strength, / they go beyond / the boundaries we erect for ourselves. / Arm-in-arm you go with them to a deeper place. / Their poetry touches you; / and in some way, / you and the artist enter the domain of inspiration and together celebrate the eternal passion of creativity.

The fox was right in telling the Little Prince:
“What is essential
Is invisible for the eye”.

Ladies and Gentlemen it was a pleasure talking to you and now, I welcome your questions.