Luis Felipe Passalacqua Author of Ilumínate

“Be honest with what it is that you love and who you really are, and start from the core.”

Meet Luis Felipe


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Luis Felipe Passalacqua, Puerto Rico’s first and only blind sculptor, was born in Santurce and raised in his family’s ranch in Guaynabo. He studied at Sacred Heart University, receiving a Baccalaureate in Sciences, concentration in Pre-Med. His passion for the arts and sciences since he was very young compelled him to obtain a Post Baccalaureate degree in Medical Illustration from Ohio State University in Columbus. In 1990, he established his own medical and scientific illustration company, Worldwide Biomedic Images. By the end of 1995, he loses his eyesight due to a meningitis that almost cost him his life. Hopeless, his family brings him back to Puerto Rico in 1996, but after overcoming the crisis he made the decision to continue as an artist, studying sculpture at the Arts League of San Juan and later at the Plastic Arts School, as their first blind student. In 2001, he begins a professional career as a sculptor, motivational speaker, arts professor, museum accessibility consultant and writer, publishing his autobiography in 2014, followed by two self-help books. Luis Felipe has offered multiple individual and collective exhibitions in and outside of Puerto Rico. He has represented the island in international art festivals and received several recognitions during his career.

How long have you been an Entrepreneur?

15

Did you leave a job to become an Entrepreneur?

Other

What is the name of your current project / company?

Two projects, a sculpture (Inspiración) and a third self help book (Ilumínate.3)

Please describe for us in 1 sentence your current project.

As a sculptor, I’m working the seventh sculpture of a series dedicated to Puerto Rican poetry and as a writer, a third self-help book and the English translation of my autobiography.

Where did the idea of your current project come from?

The inspiration comes from exploring and validating different perspectives of life, including a perspective without sight.

Why do you do what you do?

Every human life is a great story in itself and I hope to help others realize this through my work. I believe this will help empower others to develop their full potential.

What’s the one thing you wish you could go back and tell your younger self?

Acknowledge yourself! Although you might be having fun doing what you love, it’s probably more important than you realize.

What’s the most important piece of advice would you give to someone just starting?

Be honest with what it is that you love and who you really are, and start from the core.

What is the hardest thing you have had to do regarding your business?

Knowing when to let go and reinvent myself as a speaker, professor, artist and writer.

What does your typical day look like?

Very busy! I start my day with meditation and exercise. Then three hours working on current sculpture project, three hours writing manuscripts for books or lectures and two hours studying. Any time in between is used for marketing, meetings, mail, etc.

If you were to start again, and could change one thing, what would it be?

Believe in yourself but be open to what others say and trust your intuition.

What is the most important thing in life?

Finding and understanding who you are and then, give yourself to others.

What is one problem you encountered as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

I break the mold and expectations of what a blind person’s life is supposed to be, which at times could be a major obstacle. I overcome this by letting my life and my work speak for me.

Tell us something unique about yourself.

Being one of the few blind sculptors in the world which validates a different kind of reality, I believe that my only choice is to be myself.


  • GloriaMaría Isidro Villamizar

    Luis Felipe as well as being an artist and writer, is an excellent motivator … his life story inspires to make dreams come true. Congratulations

  • Maria Irene Torres

    The first time I saw his work I thought it was a collective of artists, and then he started to speak about each piece and I went nuts! It was so amazing! Now I have a blind daughter and I want him to be her art teacher and role model to follow

  • Josarie Molina

    Luis is a former colleague and now dear friend. He is knowledgeable, passionate, beautifully resilient, wise, and funny. I have gathered a lot of life tools from our conversations…I am lucky to have Luis as a friend!