ARTIST STATEMENT

The need to find a way to integrate the beautiful, harmonious, culture of my two home countries into my work is heavily rooted in my personal struggle over my cultural identity and experiences living on the border. I spent the first twenty years of my life in Matamoros, Mexico and I have now lived several years in the U.S.A., which has been a dramatic change in my life. The time spent in these two disparate cultures has led me to constantly question everything about my persona and how my experiences living on the border have shaped my art and who I am.

 

As as visual artist, I have the opportunity to use art as a vehicle to represent emotions, experiences, and stories that are often not heard. Through experimental mixed-media and intuitive painting, my work allows me to travel back through life experiences and memories and transform them into vibrant, emotionally charged abstractions. I use materials that function as indexes of the experiences and they attempt to give symbolic voice to the unheard. My work proceeds from the sense that I am able to allow the experiences and emotions of the other to inhabit me. Empathy in this context is more than the sharing of affective experience, or recognizing another's experience as similar to one's own; it is a mode of thought that might be achieved when one allows the violence of an affective experience to truly inform thinking. In this regard, I do not merely describe an inner experience but allow such experience to fold back into the world in a manner that can inform understandings both about the nature of our relationships to others and about the nature of our emotions.

As a muralist, I have completed several murals in Philadelphia, South Texas, and Cuba and worked alongside professional artists on large scale public art projects. I have also provided hundreds of underserved youth and adults with arts education programming. I have worked closely with staff to develop mural project-based curriculum, inspire, and guide students in creating individual works of art, designing murals, and experimenting with different media.

Through painting, printmaking, and community arts practices, I create a safe space for dialogue around some of the most profound issues communities and individuals may face. My work tells stories using richly crafted and emotive imagery to claim and transform spaces into a visual affirmation that reveals the strength and spirit of the community. My designs promote and encourage peace, positivism and cultural and civic pride. I strive to create art that transforms public spaces and individual lives using art as a tool for communication to bridge communities, especially those unheard.