The mural at Prairie Trail School is over half way completed. (The mural is unfinished. The images below are of the still-unfinished mural.) I am so happy the referendum went through and that we now have this awesome new structure! I am SO lucky to be a part of it. This has been a wonderful experience, meeting so many wonderful teachers and students. The kid's comments and questions about the mural are awesome! I love working in schools. The most common questions I get are "Is that hard?" "Do you like painting?" "Are you an artist?" "Why are you painting on that wall?" "and "How do you do that?" I LOVE their ideas! Wow. And I always have my answers at the ready, after much practice over the past ten years...starting at AAUW and Spaulding School so long ago. Lake County has welcomed me. :) Below, read about my plans for this mural, which we be completed by the PTS inauguration on May 13th.
The mural is still in the under-painting stage. All of the images you see are unfinished, and need many more layers and elements. I work very quickly, don't worry! I have done this mural in a crisp, somewhat realistic style, (different from my artistic style) to reflect the clean architectural elements of this beautiful new building. There will be nine panels across the bottom and on the sides. Each one illustrates an element of the D56 Vision Statement. The words of each statement will be below each image, on a banner. One of the four natural prairie grasses planted at PTS, will frame each image. I like incorporating educational elements into school murals. The school stands in the center with a braided frame and the name of the school above. There will be other little surprises like images leaping from Ipads and the minds of children...and some things I'm not even sure about yet! See more pictures below.
Thank you to Urban Edge, Dandelion Gallery, patrons, friends, & family, La Campeona, the News Sun, and the National Museum of Mexican Art!
This weekend meant a lot to me, because of all those who helped. It feels like a turning point for me. I was in two shows in downtown Waukegan! Urban Edge and Dandelion Gallery! All of the following photos were taken by other! Thank you for documenting these events! Please see this great article about The whole Waukegan Arts District, in the News Sun:
Event paints pretty picture of Waukegan - Lake County News-Sun and see the following "thank you-s"and photos.
Thank you to David Motley and Vickie Marasco of Urban Edge for including me in this exhibit, and for putting on this event for the good of Waukegan. (Also, thank you to Vickie for buying and appreciating my piece.) So much good has come from this one event and will continue to snowball, as is evident from the following thank you-s. You are the spark that will light a thousand candles in the Mexican community, art community, and beyond. (READ MORE "THANK YOUS" BELOW)
Thank you to Dandelion Gallery for your support over the past two years. The opportunity you have given me at Dandelion Gallery has branched into SO many other opportunities...I am aware of this. And the trickle down effect will continue. You were/are an essential part of the very beginning of the Arts movement in Waukegan! Your movement continues! Amazing. Also, thank you to Margaret, Raul, and Patricia of La Campeona, for including me in your broadcast on Monday, promoting my work, reminding us of the power every human connection we make has, and reminding me of the power of our Mexican culture. Thank you to ALL my friends, family, supporters, and UE & DG patrons for photographing work and posting it on facebook, buying my work, listening, coming to my shows, helping with a thousand little things, and for SUPPORTING THE ARTS in general. Your support is priceless and essential to my future and the future of Waukegan. Thank you to Ambee, Lulu, & Jon for encouraging me to start working again two years ago. Thank you for putting up with all of the chaos, helping price work, make tags, load my car, hang work, and just being understanding. It's been a big adjustment for everyone, and all three of you are incredible! You are my biggest cheerleaders. Thank you to Long Hwa-shu of the News Sun for writing and including me in a wonderful article about the whole arts movement in Waukegan! Event paints pretty picture of Waukegan - Lake County News-Sun Thank you to the National Museum of Mexican Art for including your artists in the show at UE, and for showing your support by being present.
Long Hwa-shu of the News Sun and his wife buy a painting entitled Sister Intuition. Photo by David Motley
New work at Dandelion Gallery this month. The whole grouping is entitled Pinata. Photo by Alicia Giles
Some of my work at Urban Edge. Photo by Alicia Giles
Behind Pablo's colorful paintings, you can see my daughter Ambee talking to artist Becca Zastany and my mother in a blue dress.
My daughter Ambee and artist Amy Lynn Ross watch the amazing dancing and Mexican music next to Pablo Ramirez's paintings. Photo by David Motley
My three Church paintings hanging at Urban Edge. This AMAZING raw space makes the work look even better! Vickie Marasco, curator at Urban Edge bought the piece on the far right entitled A Friend Afar! Photo by Alicia Giles
I am sorry it has been so long since I have checked in! Life has been full, and good, and strange. We had a fire in our home on February 4th. We feel so blessed that it was during the day, and everyone got out safely. We were able to move back home April 2nd. We lived in a hotel while our house was being fixed, and I continued to create artwork on the little dining table! During this time, I entered some small works in three different shows, created new work, but didn't photograph or post anything here! I am back full power now, and am so honored to be part of the following two shows. The openings are on April 20th from 5 to 9 pm just a few blocks from each other in Waukegan! I will photograph all the work I have created since January VERY SOON and post it here! :) Our town is currently part of the major flooding in Illinois. During this time of flood and fire, I reminded of the renewal that comes from loss or destruction. My new works are a reflection of that, I think.
Vickie Marasco, curator, hangs my work at Urban Edge Gallery in Waukegan, for a show entitled "Mexican Montage" in collaboration with the National Museum of Mexican Art. The small paintings to the far right are brand new. They are a part of a series entitled "Inventory." Inspired by our fire and the long inventory we were required to document, it is about taking inventory of what we have lost, and the beauty of these engrained memories. These are portraits of each member of my family who has passed away. These paritcular portraits are of the Mexican side of my family, but I am not finished documenting everyone.