DEFIANCE, Ohio – During the month of October, the work of four visual artists will be on display in the Cultural Arts Center of Defiance College’s Serrick Campus Center. Paintings and sculptural works by Robert Garcia and Frank Torrez, as well as paintings by Jesse Rivera and Damaris Morales, will be on display Oct. 4-26.
An artists’ reception is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 21, 6-8 p.m., in the Cultural Arts Center. Three of the artists are known locally, while the fourth is a recent DC graduate and making her artistic debut.
Robert Garcia of Toledo was one of the featured artists in the 2008 “Detroit vs. Toledo” installation at the Secor Gallery and the documentary “Two Toledos” by Jacob David and Joel Washing. Garcia says of his art, “The many wonders, mysteries and forces of nature, and an inherent affinity for making ‘thinks’ from scratch inspire me to pursue the arts. The awareness of your brief existence on earth is profound and mysterious to me, and I treasure the freedom to express the visions, ideas and emotions that arise from this seemingly improbably reality. I live, love and work in a humble and constant sense of thankfulness.”
Frank Torrez, also of the area, is well known for his art, community involvement, mentoring of at-risk individuals, support of Hispanic and Latino youth as they pursue college educations, and as the president of the Hispanic Awareness Organization. His media are airbrush painting, alabaster sculpture in what he calls his own “Native American style,” and mask making. A multi-talented artist, Torrez takes nature as his inspiration and feels that “whatever the material is comes out” when he gives himself to the artistic process.
Jesse Rivera, an acrylic painter, has recently returned to the Northwest Ohio area. Raised in Defiance, he chooses “vivid colors with bold black outlines to express thoughts and feelings.” Rivera explains his sources of inspiration, “My paintings are stories told in rather whimsical ways. I draw inspiration from books like Oh, the Places You’ll Go and The Giving Tree, or movies like The Life Aquatic or Monsters, Inc. However, more than books, poems, or movies, I am inspired by God. On the first day, He reveals himself as a being who likes to create. I paint because I think that when I do, I am getting closer to knowing the great painter Himself.”
Damaris Morales is a recent graduate of the graphic design program at DC. During her time at the college, she excelled in both commercial design and fine arts, including graphite portraiture and oil painting. Of the inspiration for her art, Morales says, “The beauty in things that we see . . . I like to capture that.”
The art show will foreground the contribution of these Latino/Hispanic artists in the region as a celebration of art and culture.
The artists’ reception is free and open to the public.
Defiance College, chartered in 1850, is an independent, liberal arts institution in Northwest Ohio offering more than 40 undergraduate programs of study as well as graduate programs in education and business. Defiance College has received national recognition for its educational experience of service and engagement. The college website is www.defiance.edu.
October 4, 2010