Carmen Lomas Garza: Looking Back
Carmen Lomas Garza’s work taps into a distinctive vision of her childhood in Kingsville, Texas, during the late 1950s. Her paintings and etchings recall celebrations, rites of passage, and intimate family moments. She has transformed the ephemeral papel picado of memory into a large copper tableau depicting her grandfather watering his garden, surrounded by hummingbirds, lizards and the family cat. While her children’s books have touched millions, Carmen’s paintings speak to all generations.
Release date May 2007.
Distributed by Alexander Street Press, 2007-present
“I wanted to do images that were celebrative of our culture, things that were from everyday life; things that we grew up with. Because I wanted people to just feel good about seeing the work. “I had a chance to study children’s artwork from all over the world, and I could see how children think. All children go through the same stages of development. So, I purposely chose to go back to my childhood. I remember distinctly what people were doing, even the smells, the sounds, and the colors, most especially the colors. “And that meant giving up all of my formal training with the western principles of art and going into a sort-of naïve art, though I’m not a naïve artist; and just do very direct imagery. So (like children) I could tilt off the table and show you all the contents on the table, yet everything else could be in another perspective. This allowed me to distort all the perspective, and utilize it the way I wanted.”
—Carmen Lomas Garza