Haydeé Paredes starts as an artisan at 9 years old, imitating the works of her mother, who was then a prominent artisan of Lihueimo. Is in this way, that from an early age the craftwork has been present in her life until this day, becoming in a fundamental part of it. Haydeé has a technical degree as a preschool assistant, and which she practiced for 6 years in a kindergarten school of the area, until she decides to retire and focus 100% of her work as an artisan. Since by that time, she was the only one who had managed to perfect the technique and improve the final results of her products, plus the rest of the artisans of the area were gradually leaving the work for various reasons. Thanks to the excellence of her works, the interest of people for purchasing her works was increasing over the years, and this has motivated to Haydeé to focus each day on performing of more and better shapes, this created an important source of income for his family, consisting of her husband, a farmer and school bus driver and two children. And it is this way like her life style, linked to the crafts which she has chosen, has given her the chance to spread the culture of the Chilean countryside for all over the country and the world, and also has permitted to earn the enough economic resources, which supports her right decision of dedicate her life to the traditional Chilean crafts.
The vast experience and their ability to maintain their current work, have made Haydeé becomes one of the most outstanding cultivators of this art in Chile, positioning to Lihueimo´s craftworks as one of the most appreciated one. This has been reflected by obtaining several distinctions, among which we can mention: The Lawrence Berg award to, “Best Traditional Crafts” in 2000, an award that recognizes the best national artisan delivered by the “Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile” (PUC). In 2008 she won the award for “Best Craftsman” in the region of Libertador Bernardo O’Higgins delivered by the Governing of Culture and Arts of O’Higgins. In 2011 she received the “Seal of Excellence of Handicraft Chile” which distinguishes the excellence of the craftwork and was received twice, because their works “La Pollera” and “La Lavandera” obtained the distinction that delivers by the Governing of Culture and Arts (CNCA), the PUC (Chilean delegates of the WCC) and the UNESCO office Santiago. In 2012 she was the deserving of the “2012 Outstanding Craftsman” award was given by the CNCA, and finally 2015 to give the finishing touch to his career, she received the “Traditional Craftsman Master” award, which it is the highest recognition awarded in Chile to a craftsman by the government.
The diffusion of their works is made directly at her workshop which is at home and in her webpage, but she also has participated in several exposition throughout the country like the “Muestra Internacional de Artesania”, “Fiesta de la Vendimia”, Santa Cruz, the exhibition of craftsmen “Pura Cerámica”, to name a few. Her works are also found in museums such as “Lincunlauta”, The Rancagua Museum, Interactivo Mirador (Santiago), The “Museo de Historia Nacional”, “Museo de Colchagua”, “Museo de Arte Popular Americano” among others. She has also been known for performing important works that have represented Chile in various countries, as the representation of the birth of Christ exhibited in St. Peter’s Square, in Rome Italy. Also a replica of “EL Abrazo de Maipú” was made by her, to commemorate the bicentennial of Chile and it has been exhibited until today in Mexico City, in Mexico. Haydee also made a replica of the “Virgen del Camen” which has toured Latinamerica as the representative of the “Virgen Chilena”.
Different types of reports are also issued to highlight the works of craftsmanship Lihueimo both decorating magazines, and web portals and TV programs. Besides the workshops carried out they have attracted much interest from the general public, such as the workshops held at the Cultural Palacio la Moneda Center on winter vacation and classes conducted in various public and private schools, as school Lihueimo, Las Garzas and Huique, all belonging to the commune of Palmilla, school Trewela’s School of Providencia and Huelén of Vitacura. (Text by Haydeé Paredes)