Art in Cozumel: Island Artists Profiled

Greg Dietrich continues his monthly series highlighting 2 island artists…

This month Greg Dietrich highlights 2 local artists:  Galo Ramirez & Niurka Guzmán Otañez

 

Galo Ramirez

” It is not about the object of your study” It is about the quality of your perception”

More than working in decorations, our intentions tend towards pro-positive artistic proposals revealing the sense of our times. The artist must mirror the times; we know that knowledge is the key to the door to express freedom, thus staying linked to literature is important. Artists have the

Art by Galo Ramirez

obligation of keeping themselves informed and nurture the enjoyment of reading, a pleasure. Personally, what motivates my senses is movement, and being able to transmit movement into an image, thrills me. Outlining some truths and causing the observer to reflect on them, is a pressing need of our current society. Painting is breathing life and conveying truths.

I was born in Mexico City: From early childhood my mother fostered my love for art. Creativity and life style allowed me to visit many museums and beautiful works.

I knew I had a special gift since I was a child. My parents nurtured these skills taking me to galleries in Mexico, giving me ideas and materials to work with.

At the university I began studying political sciences; however, I realized that my wish was to pursue my dreams by creating the images of the wonderful things in my mind, placing them on paper. So switching careers was imminent. That is how I came to the National School of Visual Arts.

 

An artist feels more at home when sitting across an easel. His study is his body, the sacred temple where he breathes every thought or sigh. His body and clothes covered by revealing colorful splashes used to create the visions of his soul.

It’s a painting; the true artist can release his dreams, his prayers, his love, more important. I knew I had to paint.

From the core of the country I arrived to Cozumel in 1992. I immediately got involved with the artistic and cultural life of the Island with several exhibitions, public and private commissions.

 

Niurka Guzmán Otañez

In fully inspire my work upon the social and cultural environment that surrounds me. I nurture from it and through my work I question myself and reflect on the existing insight of the woman. I try not to illustrate reality, but create images converging reality, reflecting sensations of our times.

Art by Niurka Guzmán Otañez

This process makes my work a kind of self-knowledge and recognition of the perception in my surroundings and how it has influenced my formation as a woman.

I was interested in art ever since I was a child, mainly drawing and pint. At 14 I took private drawing and painting classes; these workshops encouraged my love and curiosity to learn about the history of art and artistic techniques even more. When was 17, I began art school and since then I have not stopped painting, designing, drawing and creating. In 2006 I came to pursue a Master’s Degree at the UNAM in Mexico City. The artistic tradition, great artists and the existing engraving workshops in the City, broadened my vision and made my engraving passion grow even more.  From then on I combine my works with the plastic resources of engraving and different pictorial techniques.

I arrived to the Island of Cozumel three years ago and was elated with the array of blue hues of the ocean and spectacular sunsets that have influenced my color palette. As every place where I arrive the first thing I do is get to now the artists and art produces in the place, that is how I began a friendship with the artist Galo Ramirez that soon became a relationship of love and complicity. We love to work together, whether through individual projects or collaboratively. Last year we had a great project collaborating in mural, sculpture-9paint and sculpture. It was a very rewarding experience where we shared ideas, techniques and different plastic resolutions.

 

I am currently a full-time artist and part of my time is devoted to artistic education and teaching. The latter nurtures my work and my spirit.

 

Biography

Niurka Guzmán Otañez was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. She holds a Master’s Degree in Visual Arts from the National Autonomous University of Mexico. She has a bachelor’s degree in advertising. Graduated from the APEC University in 2003. She graduated with honors in Fine Arts and Illustration at the Altos de Chavon School of Design, affiliated to Parsons The New School for Design in 2006.

 

She has taken part of ten individual exhibitions and over 20 collective ones in different countries

Art by Niurka Guzmán Otañez

such as; France, Dominican Republic, Mexico, United States and Spain. She has been a drawing, paint and engraving teacher in different education institutions.

 

The artist has received awards and honors in engraving, paint and drawing disciplines in national and international contests; and has participated in several artistic residencies.

 

Arte en Cozumel: Perfil de los artistas de la Isla

Continúa la serie mensual de Greg Dietrich donde destacan 2 artistas de la Isla. . .

Este mes, Greg Dietrich presenta a dos artistas: Galo Ramírez y a Niurka Guzman Otañez.

 

Galo Ramírez

“No es cuestión del objeto que estudia, sino de la calidad de su propia percepción”.

Lo que pretendemos es trabajar más que en decoración es en propuestas artísticas pro-positivas que revelen el sentir de nuestro tiempo. El artista debe ser espejo de su época, nosotros sabemos que la llave para la puerta de la libertad expresiva es el conocimiento y para eso es muy importante estar ligado a la literatura. El artista tiene la obligación de estar muy enterado y cultivar el gusto por la lectura un placer.

En lo personal lo que motiva mis sentidos es el movimiento y poder transmitir el movimiento en una imagen me emociona.  Trazar algunas verdades y dejar reflexionando al observador se me hace apremiante en nuestra actual sociedad.  Pintar es respirar la vida y comunicar verdades.

 

Naci en la Ciudad de México desde temprana edad mi madre alentó mi amor por las artes, su creatividad y estilo de vida me permitieron ver muchos museos y bellas obras. Cuando era niño, sabía que tenía un don especial. Mis padres nutrían estas habilidades, llevándome a galerías en México – dándome ideas y materiales para trabajar.

 

Inicie en la universidad estudiando ciencias políticas.  Sin embargo me di cuenta que mi deseo era seguir mi sueño mediante la creación de imágenes en papel de las cosas maravillosas que estaban sucediendo en mi mente y decidi que un cambio de carrera era inminente, asi que llegue a la Escuela Nacional de Artes plásticas.

 

Un artista se siente más en casa frente a un caballete, su estudio es su mismo cuerpo es el templo sagrado donde respira cada pensamiento o suspiro;  su cuerpo y la ropa cubiertos con las salpicaduras de colores reveladores que se utilizan para crear las visiones de su alma.

En una pintura, el verdadero artista puede liberar sus sueños, sus oraciones, su amor más importante. Sabía que tenía que pintar.

 

En 1992, Llegue a Cozumel desde el corazón del continente. Inmediatamente me involucre en la vida artistica y cultural de la isla, realizando diversas exposiciones, comisiones publicas y privadas.

 

 

Niurka Guzmán Otañez

Mi obra esta inspirada completamente en mi entorno social y cultural.  Me nutro de el y a través de mi obra me cuestiono y reflexiono sobre la percepción que se tiene del concepto de mujer. En mi obra no trato de ilustrar la realidad sino de crear imágenes que sean una concentración de la realidad, un reflejo de las sensaciones de nuestro tiempo.

Este proceso hace que mi obra a la vez sea una especie de auto conocimiento y reconocimiento de la percepción de mi entorno y como este ha impactado en mi formación como mujer.

 

Desde niña me intereso el arte, principalmente el dibujo y la pintura. A los 14 años inicie clases particulares de dibujo y pintura, estos talleres despertaron aun mas mi amor y curiosidad por aprender sobre historia del arte y técnicas artisticas. A los 17 años entre a la escuela de arte y desde entonces nunca he dejado de pintar, diseñar, dibujar y crear. En el 2006 vine a estudiar una maestría en  la UNAM en la ciudad de Mexico; la tradición artistica, los grandes artistas y talleres de grabados existentes en esta ciudad ampliaron mi visión e hicieron que crecieran aun mas mi pasión por el grabado.  Desde entonces combino en mi obra los recursos plásticos del grabado y diferentes técnicas pictoricas.

Hace tres años y medio llegue a la Isla de Cozumel, quede fascinada con la gran variedad de tonos azules de su mar y los espectaculares atardeceres, los cuales han influido en mi paleta de colores. Como a todos los lugares a los que llego lo primero que busco es saber de los artistas y el arte que se produce en el lugar; fue asi como inicie una amistad con el artista Galo Ramirez que muy pronto se convertiria en una relación de amor y complicidad.  Nos encanta trabajar juntos ya sea en proyectos separados  o en colaboración.  El año pasado tuvimos un gran proyecto en colaboración de pintura mural, esculto-pintura y escultura fue una experiencia muy enriquecedora en el que intercambiamos ideas, técnicas y nuestras diferentes maneras de resolución plástica.

En la actualidad Soy artista de tiempo completo y una parte de mi tiempo la dedico a la educacion y enseñanza artistica, esta actividad nutre mi obra y mi espiritu.

 

Biografia

Niurka Guzmán Otañez nace en Santo Domingo, República Dominicana. Tiene una maestría en Artes Visuales por la Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. Licenciada en publicidad, Graduada en la Universidad APEC en el 2003. Se titula con honores en la especialidad de Bellas Artes e Ilustración en la escuela de Diseño de Altos de Chavon – Afiliada a Parsons The New School for Design en el 2006.

 

Ha participado en 10 exposiciones individuales y  en mas de 20 exhibiciones colectivas; en diversos países tales como: Francia, República Dominicana, Mexico, Estados Unidos y España. Se ha desempeñado como profesora de dibujo, pintura y grabado en diversas instituciones educativas.

 

La artista ha recibido premios y distinciones en las disciplinas de grabado, pintura y dibujo en certámenes nacionales e internacionales; y ha participado en varias residencias artísticas.

 

 

Greg Dietrich

Greg first came to Cozumel in 1988 to scuba dive and enjoy the beaches of the east side of the island. He immediately fell in love with the island and its people. His dive master convinced him he should look into buying a house here… turns out his other job was as a real estate agent. Long story short, he bought a house here on that very first visit. Greg came back to Cozumel at least twice a year for the next 10 years.

In the spring of 1998, Greg had a successful glassblowing related business in Seattle Washington, the city that is known as the glass art center in the United States. In March, on the first night of his much needed vacation, he met Liliana Macotela. This encounter changed everything.

By the end of that year, he had sold his business, packed up his engraving machine, and moved here to the island. He opened his working studio/gallery, called Galeria Azul, in the downstairs of his home. He is still there to this day and just celebrated 17 happy years of living here on the island with his wife, Liliana.
Greg Dietrich

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