Luis Jimenez, Fiesta-Jarabe, 1991-97, fiberglass with jet aircraft finish.  Image Credit: Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center

Luis Jiménez, Fiesta-Jarabe, 1991-97, fiberglass with jet aircraft finish. Credit: Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center

Today is sculptor Luis Jiménez’s birthday! Jiménez, an artist of Mexican descent, is best-known for his brightly colored sculptures depicting scenes from the American Southwest and Mexico. His work has been represented in many private and institutional art collections around the country, including the El Paso Museum of Art, the Chicago Art Institute, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Smithsonian Art Museum.

As a child, Jiménez witnessed lively music and dance festivals in his El Paso community. He also worked in his father’s neon-sign making shop, where he was inspired by the bright hues. These early experiences helped develop his artistic style, which led him to receive Scholastic Art & Writing Awards in 1957 and 1958 while he was in high school!

In 1998, Jiménez received a Distinguished Alumni award from the University of Texas in recognition of his artwork. His works were often controversial and distinguished by their use of polychrome fiberglass and distinctive colors, as well as their depictions of history (as you can see in his piece above). He served as a judge for our American Visions category in 2005. Today would have been his 73rd birthday. Happy birthday, Luis!

Luis Jiménez

This portrait of Luis Jiménez is in the collection of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Portrait Gallery. Credit: http://jpgmag.com

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