In 1964, the French newspaper "Le Figaro", published the following title, commenting on the exhibition of Violeta at the Louvre: "Leonardo Da Vinci ended at the Louvre, Violeta Parra started there."
International artists such as Joan Baez, U2, Faith no more, Pete Seeger, Wynton Marsalis, Shakira, Michael Bublé, Juanes, Alejandro Sanz, Laura Pausini, Fher (from Mana), Chavela Vargas, Café Tacuba, Joan Manuel Serrat, Mercedes Sosa, Charly García, Silvio Rodríguez, Buena Vista Social Club and Miguel Bosé among others, have performed her songs and contributed to spread her voice through the World.
Singer, author, collector, poet, painter, sculptor, embroiderer, and ceramist. Multifaceted artist, popular culture icon, treasurer and guardian of our deepest traditions and a woman of intense contradictions, but unique genius.
With more than 3,000 songs and other inspiring works, Violeta Parra won the appreciation of national art, and opened the gates for the new Chilean song. She rescued the forgotten traditional culture, traveled through Chile from north to south to meet its voice, uplift it, and save it from stereotypes. Then she reinvented it, creating musical master pieces, and release them to the country and to the world. "Create from what there is" was her slogan.
Her compositions have been praised by critics around the world, for their poetic and ingenious lyrics socially committed, and for her complex musical development.
Violeta, an avant-garde woman, went ahead of her time and through her guitar she protested, denounced and condemned social injustice and her own personal experiences. She began to speak through her chant. Her songs with social and political content aroused the hearts of young people.
To her capacity as musician and poet, joins the paint, fabrics and ceramics of virtuous originality, exposing with a hopeful sentiment her genius and talent in Argentina, Russia, Finland, Germany, Italy and France.
In 1964 the Louvre was first opened for a Latin American artist, and also the first woman to exhibit her work there. The honest art of her paintings and burlaps triumphed, while she was suffering from love.
In an interview for Swiss TV she was asked if she had to choose only one means of expression between poetry, painting, music or another of the many disciplines, she replied: "I would choose to stay with people, because they are who inspire me." But the journalist insisted, and Violeta finally decided that she would choose painting, "because it is the sad point in my life, from there I try to draw the most profound aspects."- she said.
Such was the intimate world of Violeta, and it was reflected in her creations; sad, always human, dense and childish at a time. Bright, ironic, too painful, lonely and fleeting.
In 1965, she came back to Chile and built a large marquee in La Reina, which aimed to become the center of folk culture. For a long time, Violeta waited to bring her message to the Chileans, a message of universal sensibility that today raises her as the artist with roots in popular tradition best known internationally, a genuine representative of our folklore and permanent source of inspiration for generations of popular musicians.
When Gilbert Favre, the love of her life, left her, the sadness filled her heart and her life. She announced: "The day that I do not have a love to dedicate my songs, I will leave my guitar in a corner and let me die." And she did it.
At the age of fifty, on February 5th of 1967, misunderstood by the Chilean public and unable to solve her emotional problems that tormented her for a lifetime, one shot ended her existence in the marquee of La Reina.
The world was left without her, but the author of the song “Gracias a la vida” (Here's to life), left herself in pieces.