I have created this site to chronicle those things that are of most interest to me. I have had the opportunity to engage in the arts and culture and travel to many places. Similarly, I have had the good fortune of belonging to many organizations and have been and continue to be involved in many, many wonderful projects.
It is my desire to share as much of my good fortune with you through these pages. From time to time I will add new information, new adventures and hopefully some new art work. Please come back frequently and journey with me as I continue to meet the world head on. My great desire is to live life to the fullest, do good and help others see the benefit of a life that is open to new possibilities and adventures. Currently, I am the Director of the Imagine Art AmeriCorps Program, where I manage the work of 17 AmeriCorps Members in two studios. Imagine Art, "Where Every Life is a Work of Art!"
I recently had the honor of being featured in "Los Professors" a podcast that explores the culture and issues affecting the US-Mex borderlands and beyond. Dr. Ruben Arellano and Dr. Miguel Juarez "take a historical approach to a host of topics and filter them through Chicano/Chicana and Indigenous Lenses." Please enjoy my feature in Los Professors.
Recent Work; Low Fire Platters
I have made artwork all my life. My first oil painting was an image of cavemen spearing a wooly mammoth they had captured in a hole from the Golden Book Encyclopedia; that they use to sell at Safeway. I think I was five years old. The paints came from an art kit my brother Tony bought me that had paint by number water colors, oil paints, drawing materials and a wood burning set; all in one kit! I painted it on poster board.
I eventually went to art school and received a BFA in Ceramics with and a Minor in Sculpture. While in school I ended up working for Bob "Daddy-0" Wade helping him make some of his stuff, teaching ceramics at the El Paso Museum of Art and painting, sculpture, jewelry and furniture making at La Tuna Federal Correctional. Shortly after graduating I got my first residency with the Texas Commission on the Arts artist's residency program and the rest is history. Below are links to several pages lots of early and some recent work.
My travels have taken me to the South Seas, England, the Netherlands, Canada, Mexico, Japan, Peru, Chile, and Easter Island. The places that have impacted me most are in the South Pacific. There I have found people from which we have much to learn. Please enter these parts of my site for a glimpse at the people I have encountered and what they have taught me.
In September of 2000 I traveled as part of a Maori tour group to the 8th Festival of Pacific Arts and Culture in Noumea, New Caledonia.
Unlike, my initial trip to the 6th Festival in the Cook Islands, it was my engagement with these individuals and other Maori I met along the way that made this trip particularly special. The Festival activities were full of magical moments, as were New Zealand and New Caledonia. On the pages linked below I share a variety of images and stories from this experience.
I have been fascinated by countless things that I have witnessed in the Pacific. Among them was the way that Maori men greet one another. When I return from these trips I am compelled to make work influenced by those things I've learned and observed. The heart that is pictured here was inspired by that Maori greeting and was made for La Pena's "Toma Mi Corazon" annual benefit.
In June of 2014, my sister Leticia, two of her friends, Norma and Gerry and I traveled to Peru, Santiago, Chile and Easter Island. The first part of our journey was to Peru where we spent 2 days at Machu Pichu, took a bus trip down the Inca Trail and a beautiful train ride through the mountains. From there our trip continued to Santiago, Chile where we had some tremendous meals and then boarded a plane to Easter Island. The trip was fantastic, but only now have I gotten around to share photos and will likely write a bit about the adventure. The following photo album contains lots of random photos from the trip. They aren't in any specific order and there are quite a few and some duplicates. There are 33 pages of pics. If you don't have time to view them all, go to page 22 and start there. I hope you enjoy!
In November of 2018 I joined the staff of Imagine Art. IA is a wonderful organization that provides studio space, instruction and day hab services to artists with disabilities. The work produced here is remarkable. Artists without disbilities also utilize the space and together they create a symbiotic culture that enables both to reach their maximum potential. I serve as the Director of the AmeriCorps Program. Seventeen AmeriCorps Members serve approximately 50 students in two different studio enviroments. We hold public exhibitions and other events and assist our clients to function as working artsits, producing and selling quality work.
At theTexas Health Institute I served as the Director of the Caregiver Initiative, Development Director and Webmaster.
In retirement I had the pleasure of serving as the studio assistant for Carolyn and Jose Vasquez, co-owners of Paloma's Nest an internet based business making Handcrafted Modern Heirlooms in ceramic and wood.
Prior to working for Ms. Vasquez I served in a variety of capacities at the Texas Commission on the Arts, from 1977 until August of 2007, when I retired as Executive Director.
Artists, Small Businesses or Non-Profits looking to have a website built at a reasonable price, please don't hesitate to contact me at email@example.com to discuss the possibility.