By Rich Lopez
Visit his blog on The Daily Camera
February 15, 2010: One of the most significant benefits of a sister cities relationship is the cultural exchanges that can emerge. The Dairy Center Mural by Florian Lopez was a gift from Mante. Florian is a “muralista” whose talents were recognized at an early age. Florian’s uncle brought him to the opening of the Ramon Cano Gallery in 1973. Florian showed examples of this work to the then curator of the gallery, Lucio Tenorio. Lucio himself was a celebrated muralist, who saw potential in Florian. Although many young artists brought examples of their work to Tenorio in hope that they would be allowed to apprentice with the master, only Florian was chosen. He spent the next seven years studying with Tenorio, growing his skill and learning the dicipline it takes to be a muralist. “First you must read before you paint.” In other words, you must know the subject matter and message before you can depict it. The paintings above were created from memory by Tenorio and capture the beauty of the daily life he experienced as a child harvesting sugar cane. These two paintings hang in the mayors office, a gift to the City. We were taken to a local elementary school where another of Tenorio’s mural graces the computuer lab. He spent time explaining his symbolism and use of colors.
Years later his student, Florian, was commissioned to paint a mural in the Mante municipal building. Parts of this mural are shown below. Florian’s career as a muralist was now beginning to rise. His work is greatly influence by his master, Tenorio who, in turn, was guided by his master Ramon Cano, namesake of the municipal gallery. So goes the path of Mexican muralistas.
The Boulder Art Exposition opened today, providing a glimpse into Boulder’s environment. These “plein air” paintings were painted out doors, on location. The last image is a photo of one of Lucio Renteria’s minature sculptures. Renteria is a Mante artist and this is his first public exhibition of his work, which he describes as both as both a hobby and therapy.