A VISIT WITH GUILLOUME AT HIS STUDIO IN SANDIA PARK, NM
Text by Bonnie Gangelhoff · Photos by Eric Swanson
This story was featured in the December 2015 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art December 2015 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story
Describe your studio. My recently constructed atelier was designed for convenience. It is a clean, modern structure that is bathed in natural light during the daytime hours. Situated near the base of the eastern slope of the Sandia Mountains, it is my sanctuary where inspiration and creation are fostered.
Do you display your work in the studio? We have a sculpture garden on our property, and it is just north of our home. The garden is festooned with aspen and various kinds of fruit trees. Numerous bronzes are interspersed among the trees. I also have a gallery, which is open by appointment, and it features more than 50 of my sketches and oil paintings, as well as wall-mounted bronze reliefs and bronze sculptures on tables.
How does living in New Mexico influence your work? Since we arrived in New Mexico in 1992, the Land of Enchantment has provided spiritual and artistic inspiration. The quality of light, the solitude, and the high-desert climate have all combined to help me create work that, like the terrain, is elegantly simple, yet complex in its subtleties.
Where did you reside before coming to New Mexico in 1992? After my wife and I were married in 1985 in my native Colombia, we moved to Los Angeles, where most of my siblings were residing. I soon began searching for a suitable environment that would be a good place to raise a family. But I needed to live in a place where there was a market for contemporary art. An art collector friend mentioned an artists’ colony called Santa Fe. In October of 1992, we visited New Mexico for a week. While here, I met some members of the Santa Fe Society of Artists. Within just a few weeks, we moved to New Mexico and established a temporary studio. Within three years, I located the perfect place to build a new studio—Sandia Park.
What attracts you to the figure as subject matter? Partnerships, family, and friendships make up the foundation of my life. I strive to express unity, understanding, and compassion in my work because it is a reflection of who I am and what I value most.
What kinds of things do you keep in your studio? I strive to maintain a positive and inspirational environment in my atelier. This allows me to enjoy my work and create the art that has become a big part of my life.
Do you listen to music while you work? Mostly I stream music from www.rebel
spinner.com, a New Mexico-based, free-form format. I find the diversity provided by this station to be a beautiful inspiration. I also enjoy the “sounds of silence,” especially when I work late into the evening.
What artists have influenced you? I think geniuses like Michelangelo, Bernini, El Greco, Modigliani, Giacometti, and Toulouse-Lautrec are the first who come to mind.
What impresses you about other artists’ work? Mostly I appreciate artists whose work is presented and organized in a way that inspires me to dream bigger and expand my own palette of ideas. I mainly appreciate the work of the great masters. While in art school in my native Colombia, my first major inspirations were Michelangelo and Bernini. Soon, I will be traveling to Rome and Pietrasanta, Italy, where I will be studying old and new movements in that country’s art. Pietrasanta is where some of the world’s top artists go to create.
What accomplishments are you most proud of in your fine-art career? I am most proud of having people from all over the world purchase and collect my art. And I feel proud when I receive communications from them describing their love for my work.
If your studio were on fire, what one thing would you save? If God chose for me to lose nearly everything, I would save myself because I can rebuild or re-create anything I own. As the song says, I’d “pick myself up, dust myself off, and start all over again!” As long as I have my family, my health, and the people I love, I don’t care that much about my possessions.
What do you enjoy doing when you are not working? More than anything, I enjoy spending time with my wife. We go on walks together, practice yoga and meditation, and sometimes even read to each other. Additionally, we enjoy good films and spending time with our children whenever possible.
Where do you take people when they come to visit you? I enjoy sharing the process of my work, especially painting in the presence of visitors to my studio. I love to take them on walking tours of my atelier, sculpture garden, and gallery.
Weems Galleries & Framing, Albuquerque, NM; Pippin Contemporary, Santa Fe, NM; Xanadu Gallery, Scottsdale, AZ; Simon Gallery, Tucson, AZ; Cortile Gallery, Provincetown, MA; Crescent Moon, Wilmington, DE; Guilloume Fine Art, Sandia Park, NM; Howell Gallery, Oklahoma City, OK; Expressions Fine Art Gallery, La Conner, WA.
Featured in the December 2015 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
Southwest Art December 2015 print issue or digital download Or subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss a story!
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