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In Lima, a Home and Studio That Remains a Work in Progress

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WHEN THE LIMA, Peru-based artist Miguel Andrade Valdez started sketching designs for a home and studio in the bohemian district of Barranco, his primary obsession was not the building’s form but how it might give shape to his native city’s stark, paralyzing light. Throughout its austral winter, banks of fog shroud the escarpment that separates the Peruvian capital from the Pacific, turning the sky into a blank, dimensionless field: “Six in the morning looks just like 6 in the evening — there’s nothing to mark the horizon,” says Andrade, 43. Herman Melville, who docked in the city as a 19th-century seaman, devotes a paragraph of “Moby-Dick” (1851) to Lima’s “white veil,” which, he writes, “spreads over her broken ramparts the rigid pallor of an apoplexy that fixes its own distortions.” Many of the city’s 10 million residents call it Lima la Gris — Lima the Gray — others, simply, La Horrible.

Andrade was similarly ambivalent about the city himself. As a child, he spent weekends with his father among the Baroque church towers and sagging wooden balconies of the historic center — at the time, he says, he saw old Lima as “a marvel, like a movie.” But it was a difficult place to grow up, plagued through the 1980s and early ’90s by retributive violence between the central government and the leftist guerrillas who called themselves the Shining Path. By 2005, when he graduated from Lima’s Pontifical Catholic University of Peru with a degree in fine arts, car bombs and political oppression had given way to economic boom times driven in part by rising prices for copper and gold, two of the country’s key commodities. Lima’s young artists spread out across a metropolis suddenly released from decades of fear in search of studio spaces: Many settled in Barranco, a coastal neighborhood founded in the 19th century as a wealthy resort town that, through the 1970s, became a hub for writers, painters, musicians and filmmakers. In 2008, Andrade bought a half-ruined adobe house on a 1,900-square-foot plot several blocks back from the genteel seaside mansions. Back then, though, the building was “unlivable, in really bad shape,” he says, and for years he left it untouched.

Lima, too, was becoming a burden. In 2010, after the city’s long winters became unbearable, Andrade moved to Mexico City, where he worked on and off for five years; soon after arriving, he visited Luis Barragán’s 1948 home and studio, which to him represented “a different sort of architecture: kind, unpretentious, filled with details that weren’t immediately evident.” He was especially drawn to the inward-facing rooms, the hidden gardens and the manipulation of shadow and light. “I thought those elements would work well in a city that’s gone through so much violence, so much aggression, so much ugliness,” he says.

Andrade scrapped his plans to preserve his original adobe structure and imagined, instead, a cuboid prism rising out of a street-side wall, its bank of windows jutting from its upper surface, like one of old Lima’s covered balconies transubstantiated into glass. Built from a limited palette of concrete, brick and terrazzo, the house has since become Andrade’s haven and laboratory, reflecting and shaping the work he makes within it while transforming his relationship to the strange, melancholy — and ultimately inspiring — city he again calls home.

TODAY, ANDRADE’S HOUSE, which he shares with his 28-year-old partner, Diana Ortega, an architect, and their 18-month-old son, remains a work in progress. A plywood door opens off the street into a narrow garden of philodendrons, ferns and bromeliads connected to the 920-square-foot studio through a pair of 16-foot-high windows, which pivot on iron mullions that divide them into four equal quadrants (a nod to Barragán and his collaborator the German-born artist Mathias Goeritz), dissolving the barrier between indoors and out. Upstairs, summer sun streams through the glassed-in balcony that bends around the corner of the 380-square-foot living-dining room, framing a panoramic view of low-slung rooftops, branching acacias and a pale sliver of the Pacific beyond. (On foggy days, blackout curtains hide the omnipresent gloom.) At the back of the house, in the 370-square-foot primary bedroom, a glass-sided cube rises out of the ceiling, a contemporary take on the three-dimensional skylights called teatinas that have been used to diffuse and filter Lima’s oppressive winter light since the 18th century.

When Andrade began casting the house’s first concrete columns and lintels in 2013, plywood formwork also began appearing in his artistic practice. In one piece from that period, “Construção/La Rabona,” he drew a sketch of a minor Lima monument, then commissioned three master builders to make plywood molds that would yield the desired shape. The objects, made from materials that sculptors and architects typically discard, “point to a volume that doesn’t exist, that will never exist,” Andrade says — in other words, to a surface containing a void, much like the home itself.

In the years since Andrade and Ortega met in 2018, the house has been transformed from a Brutalist mass into something more precise and humane. Together, they sheathed the structure’s second floor in pale pink washed terrazzo, dissolving the heavy box into a Cubist cloud. To keep from overstimulating himself, Andrade initially left most of the interiors blank, though they’re now filled with prototypes made by a design collective called Taller Tarapacá that he and Ortega founded in 2019 along with the 32-year-old industrial designer Paula Cermeño León (who helped Andrade turn his first sketches for the house into usable plans) and the 35-year-old textile designer Mozhdeh Matin. Behind Andrade’s rooftop office — a box of concrete and glass surrounded by potted sago palms and epidendrum orchids like tiny red and orange candles — an Enzo Mari-inspired cabinet holds a collection of ceramics designed by Cermeño in dusty shades of turquoise and ocher; in the living room, there are wool carpets made by the local weaver Inocencio Fernández, 53, their rough stripes of sienna and rust translated into textile patterns by Matin from Andrade’s oil paintings.

In his own work, Andrade has in recent years traded cement and paint for layers of old fliers that he peels off the city’s walls and assembles into sculptural slabs, the smallest roughly a foot across, the largest — called “Moby Dick” (2021) — a towering monolith nearly eight feet tall. Along with his 28-year-old assistant, Elvis Rosales Valencia, he whitewashes them and scrapes down the surfaces to reveal flecks of neon green ink or glimpses of trash, embedded like shards of pottery in an archaeological site. From a distance, they resemble the marble steles that ancient societies once used to record battles or royal lineages for posterity. But rather than proclaim sanctioned facts — the static material of official history — these objects, like the house, turn inward, concealing fragments of Lima’s collective memory beneath a pallor of white plaster. The pieces are elegiac, referencing the pollution that has choked Lima’s rivers and the pandemic-era loss of shared experiences, including the canceled concerts and movie screenings advertised on the posters. But they are also Andrade’s rapprochement with his city, its unflinching light given solid form, contained by a house that is always unfinished, always changing, yet filled with color and life.



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Hilaria Baldwin reveals she and Alec are ‘NOT OKAY’ following the tragic Rust shooting

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Hilaria Baldwin openly admitted that she and her husband, Alec Baldwin, are ‘not okay’ following tragic Rust shooting during a preview interview with Extra published Friday.

The yoga instructor, 38, stated tearfully, ‘We can’t be okay. No one is okay.’ The emotional statement came a little over one year since cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was fatally shot on set on October 21, 2021 due to a prop gun with live rounds that was accidentally discharged while in the hands of Baldwin, 64.

The mother of seven further expressed that, ‘It was and is a tragedy that nobody could ever have imagined.’

‘Not okay’: Hilaria Baldwin, 38, revealed to Extra that she and her husband, Alec Baldwin, 64, are ‘not okay’ following tragic Rust shooting 

Hilaria could be seen sitting in a chair with city skyscrapers sprawled out behind her through a large window amid the interview. 

The businesswoman donned an all-black ensemble, and carefully listened to the interviewer asking about how the Baldwin family was coping following the fatal shooting. 

Initially, the podcaster remained silent as she took in a deep breath, and then answered with her voice cracking, ‘We’re not okay.’ 

Shortly after the tragedy, Alec was involved in a ‘wrongful death’ lawsuit filed by Halyna’s family, which included her husband, Matthew. Earlier this year in October, both parties reached a settlement. 

The 30 Rock actor shared the news on Instagram, writing in the caption, ‘Throughout this difficult process, everyone has maintained the specific desire to do what is best for Halyna’s son.’  

'A tragedy': The mother of seven further added that, 'It was and is a tragedy that nobody could ever have imagined'; Alec seen on the phone on set of Rust following fatal shooting in October 2021

‘A tragedy’: The mother of seven further added that, ‘It was and is a tragedy that nobody could ever have imagined’; Alec seen on the phone on set of Rust following fatal shooting in October 2021 

‘We are grateful to everyone who contributed to the resolution of this tragic and painful situation,’ he concluded. 

According to People, Matthew had released a statement of his own, ‘All of us believe Halyna’s death was a terrible accident. I am grateful that the producers and the entertainment community have come together to pay tribute to Halyna’s final work.’  

Also in October, the actor uploaded a tribute to Halyna on Instagram on the one-year anniversary of her tragic death, simply adding the caption, ‘One year ago today…’

Last month in November, Alec officially sued Rust crew members and the armorer for negligence and for supplying a prop gun loaded with ammunition. 

According to The New York Times, the lawsuit stated, ‘This tragedy happened because live bullets were delivered to the set and loaded into the gun.’ 

Tribute: In October, on the one-year anniversary since Hutchins's death, the 30 Rock actor shared a tribute to the late cinematographer on his Instagram

Tribute: In October, on the one-year anniversary since Hutchins’s death, the 30 Rock actor shared a tribute to the late cinematographer on his Instagram 

‘Though by no means comparable, Baldwin must live with the immense grief, and the resulting emotional, physical, and financial toll, caused by the fact that Cross-Defendants’ negligent conduct, assurances, and supervision put a loaded weapon in his hand,’ the lawsuit continued. 

‘And led him, Hutchins, and everyone else on set to believe that his directed use of the weapon was safe.’ Along with the cinematographer being fatally shot, a producer on set, Joel Souza, was also shot and injured. 

In December of last year, two months after the tragedy, Alec opened up during a candid interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos. 

Alec had stated that he, ‘didn’t pull the trigger,’ while on set at Bonanza Creek Ranch in Sante Fe. ‘I would never point a gun at anyone and pull the trigger at them, never.’ 

In March of this year, he also followed legal papers in which he denied having any responsibility in the fatal shooting, according to The New York Post.   

Suing: Last month in November, Alec sued a few Rust crew members and the armorer for 'negligence'; the Baldwins seen in October in New York

Suing: Last month in November, Alec sued a few Rust crew members and the armorer for ‘negligence’; the Baldwins seen in October in New York 

By his side: Hilaria has continuously supported her husband and has publicly shared her support on her main Instagram page

By his side: Hilaria has continuously supported her husband and has publicly shared her support on her main Instagram page 

Following Hutchins’s tragic death on set of Rust last year, Hilaria has continuously shown support for her husband. 

In July, the podcast host shared a lengthy post where she emotionally expressed how ‘grateful’ she was for Alec. 

She told her husband to, ‘turn down the volume on the darkness and negativity,’ and that it was easier, ‘now more than ever to slander people and cherry pick and piece together strands taken out of context, ‘opinions’, or complete fabrications.’ 

Hilaria also added that ‘enemies’ were seeking to ‘destroy him.’ The star further penned, ‘I am the one that sees you in your dark moments…the human moments,’ and that, ‘So many love you, AB, we are here for you to lean on and feel safe.’ 

In August, she shared another heartfelt post to the actor, typing, ‘I am not going anywhere. Take all the time to be sad. I am here.’ 

Celebration: The couple recently celebrated Thanksgiving and the podcaster shared a family photo

Celebration: The couple recently celebrated Thanksgiving and the podcaster shared a family photo

Two months after welcoming their seventh child, the duo dressed to impress while attending the American Museum of Natural History’s 2022 Museum Gala in NYC on Thursday. 

During the preview interview with Extra, which airs in full-length on Monday, December 5, opened up briefly about their large family. 

‘I would say that we’re done, but I said we were done with six,’ Hilaria revealed as she held her two-month-old daughter. 

‘But Alec still has to go and do his part. So if he does not do his part, sometimes things can happen,’ the entrepreneur added.

'I am here': Hilaria penned, 'I am not going anywhere. Take all the time to be sad. I am here,' in an Instagram post to send her love and support to Alec

‘I am here’: Hilaria penned, ‘I am not going anywhere. Take all the time to be sad. I am here,’ in an Instagram post to send her love and support to Alec 

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