Renatta Villamar (Guayaquil, December 8, 2000) is an Ecuadorian poet. The youngest daughter of the former mayor of Guayaquil, Cynthia Viteri, Villamar has embarked on a unique journey of self-expression and exploration through literature and art. Born into a high-profile political family, Villamar defied traditional expectations and chose to chart her own path in life. An emerging writer and illustrator, she first gained recognition with her debut poetry collection, “Una flor en la tormenta” (“A Flower in the Storm”), first presented in the Guayaquil International Book Fair in 2021. Aged just 20 at the time of publication, Villamar’s work draws on personal experiences and emotions, reflecting her battles with mental health conditions, including depression and anxiety, and serves as a testament to her resilience. Her decision to work as a waitress, while simultaneously honing her craft as a writer, speaks to her humility and commitment to personal growth. As she continues her journey as an artist, Villamar has made appearances at international literary events, such as the Bogotá International Book Fair in 2022, further establishing her presence in the literary world.
The journey of Renatta Villamar, the daughter of Guayaquil’s mayor Cynthia Viteri, into the world of literature is a fascinating tale of personal struggle, transformation, and triumph. Villamar’s first book, titled “Una flor en la tormenta,” debuted at the Guayaquil International Book Fair in September 2021. This book, a poetry collection, is a poignant articulation of pain, love, and admiration.
Born out of personal experiences and anecdotes, Villamar’s poetry draws from diverse sources. One of these sources is her mother, for whom she wrote the first poem in the book. Villamar’s honesty and authenticity radiate through her work, as she narrates her struggles and experiences with unapologetic candor.
In addition to writing, Villamar also reveals her artistic side through the illustrations in her book, all of which she created herself. This talent for visual art is not limited to her literary works; Villamar also painted a mural in La Madriguera, a local bookstore, displaying another facet of her artistic expression.
Literary Triumph over Struggle
The title of Villamar’s debut book, “Una flor en la tormenta” (A Flower in the Storm) serves as an allegory for her personal struggles and resilience. Villamar has been battling depression and anxiety since the age of nine and has been diagnosed with three mental illnesses. Despite undergoing various treatments and therapies, her struggles persist. However, she continues to channel her experiences into her writing, symbolizing her perseverance in the face of adversity.
Finding Inspiration in Unlikely Places
Villamar’s journey with mental health is not just a personal battle but also a source of her artistic inspiration. Her stay in a psychiatric hospital in Houston, Texas, exposed her to an array of stories and talents that influenced her writing. The tragedy and resilience she witnessed in the hospital further inspired her to express her experiences through her art, similar to her idol, Frida Kahlo.
From Café Waitress to Celebrated Poet
Beyond her initial success as a poet, Villamar exhibits an unyielding ambition for growth. In 2022, she worked as a waitress at a local café in Guayaquil, demonstrating her humility and dedication to hard work. Later in the year, Villamar took part in the International Book Fair in Bogotá, Colombia, gaining further recognition for her work.
Villamar’s writing journey continues as she aspires to inspire others through her work and her personal story. She is currently working on a novel, scheduled for release in two years, and plans for a second edition of her poetry collection.
Renatta Villamar is more than just an emerging Ecuadorian author. She is a symbol of resilience and the transformative power of art. Her work serves as an inspiration to many, particularly those battling mental health issues. Her ability to channel personal struggles into moving literature while juggling everyday life sets her apart as a truly exceptional young talent. Her journey, as mirrored in her debut book “Una flor en la tormenta,” illustrates that, like a flower weathering a storm, it is possible to grow, flourish, and radiate beauty even in the face of adversity.
- Una flor en la tormenta