Art Brokerage: Soraida Martinez American Artist: b. 1956. Soraida Martinez is a fine artist and a designer who is known as the creator of Verdadism. This painting genre is a form of hard-edge abstraction and consists of two distinct, yet integral parts: the visual component and the written commentary. Soraida created the word Verdadism by combining the Spanish word for truth (Verdad) and the English suffix for theory (ism). This art style, which was created in 1992, has influenced the work of many contemporary artists and writers; it is also being used by educators nationwide to teach diversity and tolerance. Soraida was born in New York City in 1956 and since 1986 has been in business as the owner of an art and design studio. Soraida studied art at Rowan University, where she graduated in 1981 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts with a specialization in design; she also holds a Liberal Arts degree focusing on psychology. In Verdadism, every painting is always accompanied by a written social commentary based on Soraida's personal life experiences and observations on American society. Because it directly confronted social issues at a time when it was not fashionable, Verdadism has been called the first socially conscious art style of the 21st century. Soraida has gained recognition and received many awards for this unique thought-provoking and visually stimulating art style, which addresses issues of sexism, racism and stereotyping for the precise purpose of promoting tolerance and a deeper understanding of the human soul. In 1999, Soraida wrote a book on the Art of Verdadism. The Verdadism art style has been featured in many magazines and newspapers, as well as on radio and television; many of the Verdadism paintings have been used as covers for books and scholarly journals. In 1996, Soraida was appointed by the governor to a seat on the New Jersey State Council On The Arts. Through her art, Soraida is an advocate and humanitarian who visits young children in schools in order to encourage and inspire them to strive to achieve their fullest potential. Soraida is frequently asked to do exhibitions on her Verdadism art and philosophy at universities, institutions and corporations.