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Vivi_Navarro (Personnalisé)

Vivi Navarro

Travel journals and new horizons

Vivi Navarro is a painter and travel journal artist whose work brings together her love of sea voyages, crossings and the horizon. She is setting sail with PONANT on a non-stop crossing from Lisbon to Buenos Aires to share her passion for “life on board“.

How did travel become part of your life?

Even as a child, I had a visceral attraction to the vastness of the sea. As a teenager, I would trace imaginary journeys on atlases and invent written ‘chronicles’. I felt a fierce urge to travel. My father’s passion for explorers, adventures and geography, as well as our ‘nomadic’ Andalusian roots, may have contributed to my love of faraway places, discovery and movement. By the time I was 13, I was into drawing and knew I wanted to study at art school so I could later sail, write and draw. Seven years at Fine Art School, including three specialising in technical and scientific arts, provided solid foundations that I still value today.

vivi navarro

Is a non-stop crossing a “different” way of travelling?

The sea is total poetry, and crossings are inspiring on so many levels. For some people, it invites introspection. It teaches you about yourself and awareness of distance, absence and immensity. Space-time reference points are different.

Is the vast ocean an inexhaustible source of inspiration for you?

Yes, the ocean, the swell, the movement, the colours, the blazing sky at daybreak with clouds ringed with gold or seemingly going on forever. But what inspires me most is the ship itself. I’d rather watch a sunrise or sunset from the deck than try to capture it in my journal. I don’t want to paint the sea for fear of not doing it justice – I love it too much!

Does the expression “the ends of the earth” resonate with you?

I’m viscerally drawn to the horizon that can never be reached. The sea goes around the world, to the ends of the earth, linking continents and, as a result, people. It’s a wonder. The more I work, the more unexpected paths my creativity takes.

Where does your passion for travel journals come from?

Journals became part of my career from out of nowhere, stemming from the desire to write, primarily to describe the world. They are a compendium of all technical freedoms. I work a lot with materials that have been around for a long time: nautical charts, sails, logbooks, maps and printed materials such as diaries. And I create collections. The material is present, palpable. I also love the blank page. I don’t fear it. For my published books, I do the layout from A to Z. I’m passionate about computer graphics and work with graphic pencils. Combining new tools with traditional techniques opens up new possibilities.

Do you have any travel memories you’d like to share?

If I had to choose one, it’d be sailing in the Atlantic aboard the Russian Cape Horner Kruzenshtern. Sitting on the deck, I was warm, and despite the slight swell, the four-masted barque remained stable. Some sailors were working on the pulleys, others were rehearsing dance moves for the evening show, and the quartermasters were playing dominoes. I was exactly where I was supposed to be. The splendour of this ship made me dizzy with love.

vivi navarro

What do you expect from this PONANT cruise between the old and new worlds?

A new taste for adventure, the unknown, challenges to be met. I love the idea of crossing the equator. I’ve not yet crossed this line equidistant from the poles. Crossing the Atlantic raises questions and, of course, inspires dreams. Twenty days at sea will pass by in a flash, which is paradoxical as sailing is about praising slowness… But most important will be the encounters with crew and passengers, bonds we will slowly forge.

vivi navarro

What experiences do you offer passengers?

They will have the chance to create their own travel journals and experiment with different media. I’ll teach them how to see their environment more clearly, both as a whole and in the smallest detail. I’ll take them through the basics of drawing, but you don’t have to be a pro to produce a good travel journal. Colours, bold layouts, line drawings, and collages will emerge from the pages, from the sea miles, according to the personalities of each participant. We’ll be a crew within a crew, and the journal will be food for discussion. The idea is also to raise awareness of life on board and the best human values it embodies: solidarity, humility, reliability and responsiveness.

Do you have anything you’d like to say to passengers?

Expand your horizons with this introduction, learn, relax, come with a smile on your face, never lose sight of the fact that these lessons are for a given time, a leisure activity, that you’re there to enjoy yourself. Never give up and never underestimate yourself. I guarantee that anyone can do it. I have high hopes that passengers will be hooked on travel journaling after this crossing!

Photos credits : Vivi Navarro

Tourisme : Nouvelle-Calédonie, vue rapprochée sur le lagon turquoise avec l'île du pin en arrière plan

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