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 Carmen Lomas Garza  (1948 - )

About: Carmen Lomas Garza


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Lived/Active: California/Texas      Known for: naive campesino genre, graphics

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
"Carmen Lomas Garza was born in Kingsville, Texas.  At 13, she made a commitment to pursue a career in art and taught herself elements of drawing.  Her works of art depict childhood memories of family and friends in a wide range of activities from making tamales to dancing to Tejano music.

Garza has a bachelor’s degree in science from Texas A&I University (currently Texas A&M University, Kingsville) where she studied art education and studio art.  She also has a master’s degree in education from Antioch Graduate School-Juárez/Lincoln Center and a master’s degree in arts from San Francisco State University, where she concentrated on lithography and painting in oil and gouache.

Garza has had several one-person shows in U.S. museums including the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden/Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York City; Smith College Museum, Northampton, Mass.; The Mexican Museum, San Francisco; and the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque.  In 1991, she had a major one-person exhibition, “Pedacito de mi Corazón/A Piece of My Heart,” at Laguna Gloria Art Museum, Austin that traveled to several galleries and museums, including the El Paso Museum of Art, Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum, Chicago and The Oakland Museum.

Garza is the recipient of two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the California Arts Council.  In the summer of 1996, the National Endowment for the Arts selected Garza to receive a special international artist-in-residence grant from the Mexican arts agency, Fondo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes, to reside in Mexico for two months.
In 1990, Children's Book Press of San Francisco published a bilingual book, Family Pictures/Cuadros de familia of Garza’s paintings and short stories.  More than 120,000 copies in hardcover and paperback were sold.  A second children's book, In My Family/En mi familia was published in September 1996."

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Carmen Lomas Garza lives in San Francisco, and makes lithographs and etchings of Chicano family life, usually drawn from her memories of childhood. Influenced by Mexican folk art, she works in a sophisticated neo-primitive style. "Loteria" (1973), for example, shows a birds eye view of people sitting at a lottery table with cards, cakes, and street lights.

Garza earned an M.A. from the Juarez-Lincoln Center in Austin, Texas, and studied in Mexico. She belonged to the Con Safos, a group of socially conscious Chicano artists in San Antonio, Texas, and has been associated with the Galleria de la Raza in San Francisco. She was a member of the national task force on Hispanic-American art set up by the National Endowment for the Arts.

(Information for the biography above is based on writings from the book, "American Women Artists", by Charlotte Streifer Rubinstein)

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Ms. Lomas Garza's work has been exhibited in galleries and museums throughout the US and abroad and her artwork is in both private & public collections (e.g., Smithsonian Museum of American Art).  Much of her work focuses on the traditions and daily activities of Mexican-American culture.  In a folkstyle that uses bright colors and simply drawn images Ms. Lomas Garza portrays people, oftentimes family members, in ways that convey a love and respect for family, home and one's culture.

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