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In 1965 his life is shattered when he loses his elder brother in a tragic accident; a year later he leaves his job. In 1967 he enters the National Academy of Fine Arts in Lima (Peru), studying painting, design and graphic art, and gets his degree with top marks in 1971. At the Academy, he makes friends with the carpenter, who becomes one of his dearest friends, teaching him how to work wood and thus helping him pay his studies. From 1968 onwards, he takes part in various collective exhibitions. In 1970, he goes on a study tour to Chile, Argentina, Brazil. In 1973 he makes the big jump; his dream is to go to Europe, the political situation in Peru is difficult and he decides to leave for Brazil, living in Rio de Janeiro for two years where he has two personal exhibitions of his paintings. At the end of 1975 his dream comes true. He leaves for Europe on a merchant ship, stopping first at Rotterdam, then Bremen, and finally Rome where he lives for two years. In 1976 he wins a grant from the Italo-Latin American Institute to study at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome and from that moment his true passion for marble becomes even greater. 1978 he moves to Florence, where he lives for more than a year, taking part in a biographical film "Three painters", directed by Rafael Guzman, with Christian Olivares (Chile), Carlos Nakatani (Mexico), and MelitÚn Rivera E. (Peru). At the end of 1979 he visits Carrara and then Pietrasanta, deciding to move there permanently. In 1981 he travels to Portugal and stays there for three months, working in sculpture at the Studio Irmaos Baptists in Pero Pinheiro. From 1980 onwards MelitÚn Rivera, onwards, he's been living and working in Azzano in the Alta Versiglia region of Italy near Pietrasanta.
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