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Rite IV Marriage:

Hieros Gamos


Hieros Gamos is presented in series of photography from documentation, photo collage, video, and love letter installation as part of intimate documentation and collection from K Sea Ya and Ryan. The deeper meaning of Hieros Gamos is the marriage between insight and compassion, the union between the introspective quality, and the extroverted qualities, balancing each other.

Ryan and I met in Rio in 2007 introduced by common friends. At that time, Ryan was traveling in South America,  from Europe, but he was born in America. He got enchanted by Brazilian culture and music. At the time he was working remotely and learning Portuguese, and having guitar lessons with Brazilian music especially Bossa Nova.  I was enchanted by Ryan's musicality, voice, and maybe, the way he looked at me, deeply... It was definitely an imprint the first time we saw each other.  We got together for a date three months after and we never left each other.

After 4 years, we made our vows embraced by the beautiful and picturesque surroundings of a mangue beach in Paraty,  the end-point of the Caminho do Ouro (Gold Route) from Minas Gerais reminiscent of the Portuguese colony.  

The beginning of our relationship was intensely passionate and we had a lot of resistance, meltdowns, and fears to dissolve before committing to a deeper aspect of our relationship.  With time we realized, we were building strength and integrity in each other.​

In Dec of 2010, our ceremony. Becoming a Bride was one of the most intense and meaningful events that happened in my life. On the day of the wedding, the rain paused,  and the wind was blowing fiercely. At 6:30 PM I arrived in a fisherman's boat and walked a wooden bride's Isle of almost 430 ft and 3 foot large, above the water.  From the sea to the land I walked the way alone and bare fit.  Arriving at the beach,  I crossed a portal decorated with orchids and I received a pair of shoes from my older sister dressing in a silky turquoise gown. I was received by my father's blessing kissing my hands and offering to my future husband. The ceremony was celebrated by our friend Ídalo who shared words of wisdom extracted from the Tao and confirmed by a registry official. Friends offered songs and different languages. A translation of both languages was offered by Ryan's Portuguese teacher and our dear friend Rogerio, and poetry. The ceremony hosted 100 guests between family members and intimate friends. Two days after the wedding, I had a deep breakthrough emotion and was afraid to go forward with moved by fear of abandonment.   With time, resistance and fear melted like ice over the sun held our presence and dedication to each other.  It took several years to see our relationship beyond resistance and attachment. We still much to go in order to learn how to see one another without some of the projections we often carry along with life. 

 The vows and rites follow years of renewal, resetting, and enduring new stages of development.  Small rituals and routines offer support to clarify our directions, and our commitment to a life together made by everyday life steps. 


In the first year of our relationship,  Ryan introduced to me Vipassana Meditation in 10 days retreat. We made the first retreat together, in separate sections between females and males. During this time, I felt the intensity of sensations in my body, caused by anxiety and the fear of abandonment. I also experienced those layers dissolving, opening more space to see the reality as it is. It was the most important and precious gift Ryan introduced to our life. From this grounding beginning rooted in the dharma teachings, we realized the great transformation we were supporting one another. Although couples are not permitted to share space during the retreats,  in the Vipassana tradition taught by Goenka, the lesson of dharma is a path for healing relationships. Vipassana meditation and lessons including The four noble truths, The Ten Paramis, and the Eightfold Path taught by the Buddha gave us a solid foundation to work our relationship with ourselves and each other, extending to self-compassion to every being we came across.

In 2013 we faced a moment of physical distance, living between two homes in Rio and Sao Paulo. The Performance The Look of Love was an act of coming together to experience the pain of distance. It happened in São Paulo and had the generous contribution and presence of the musicians Caito Marcondes, Lisa Muller, Itamar Collaco, and the videography of Naor Elimelech. Lisa Muller is a singer from Germany, and she was visiting Brazil to learn about the music and the culture. She spent three months in our house introduced by the site Air Bnb.  

Before moving to the United States in 2013, when the house was almost empty and dissolved,  an exhibition took space curated by Paulo Klein with the support of Salete Barreto de Abreu.  Mirror MeWe took the entire space of the house with the register of pictures, few pieces of furniture, and installation of love letters, and a special selection of objects which tells the first part of a story of veals and rites of passages.  

The couple's portrait Hieros Gamos was created in 2018, at the place and moment our first child was conceived, in Lumiar, Brazil. 

The Black and White was portrait during our first trip back to Rio after Lumiar war born. 

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