Venâncio (Ademar Venâncio de Souza Rocha) was born in Amazonas, and has lived in São Paulo (SP) and Rio de Janeiro (RJ), cities he sought to continue his education. But one of the most important influences in Venâncio’s life was his grandfather, Bel Inácio Venâncio, who started sculpting at 65, in distant Fortaleza (CE). “Everyone thought my grandfather was going crazy but the old man used to say that by the end of his life someone in the family would carry on what he had started.” And that’s how Venâncio, who studied sculpture in the Parque Lage school of Rio de Janeiro (with César Cunha), returned to his hometown, Iranduba, and started sculpting in wood.
He now works for the local municipal council but has never stopped sculpting. His themes are always regional. “My grandma was a Waiwai Indian, and for me the search for my roots are a matter of self-esteem. My grandfather and my mother are very important to me. It’s like trying to fight against something, to no avail. It surfaces. Unconsciously.”
Venâncio says he buries the wood he is going to work on for six months, so it loses all its sap. “It prevent it rotting”, he says. He finishes the conversation quoting Rodin: “Every man is a kind of artist. Every artist is a man.”