Mark Villarreal

The strengths I have as an abstract painter come from my education at the Kansas City Art Institute. During my tenure at KCAI, the painting program’s emphasis was on the figurative discipline. The department chairman’s ethos was “paint from nature.”
There were two abstract painting studios in the department, but these professors also taught figure drawing. There were heavy doses of, you just don’t make this stuff up & Good work always comes from direct observation, dispensed to all the painting students.
The work in this show was produced after my first trip to Italy this summer. My titles reference this trip, a show of John Singer Sargent viewed while returning from Italy and Jazz standards from the 1950’s and 60‘s.
I continue to reevaluate my working process and the formal criteria I rely on. The picture plane is becoming more fluid. There is a greater emphasis towards a reductive attitude in each completed painting and drawing. The works on paper start out covering the floor of my studio. I then use large Chinese brushes to apply strokes of watercolor. These gestures are the back bone of each drawing.
The paintings start out the same way, on the floor with oil washes applied over the entire surface.
How time is spent in the studio follows the reductive goals of this new work.
I don’t clutter my time with reading or music while painting. In the past, painting would not start until I had picked out the music for the day. The sounds now are my breathing, the mixing of paint, brushes against canvas and from the neighborhood outside my studio.
On occasion I will pop in a jazz cd as a reward for progress in the studio.
In the last few years I have developed quite an affinity for the work of Arshile Gorky.
While a student, I passed over his delicate brush strokes and washes of color preferring the thick smears and splashes of Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock.
Now that I am ready to see what he was up to, I am intrigued by how feminine his work is when compared to the swagger of his contemporaries.
For the past four years I am placing greater importance on a delicate line and the quiet application of paint.



BFA, Concentration in Painting, Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, MO



2014 Unicom Gallery, Republic Plaza, Denver, CO


2014 Open Press: 25 years of Printmaking, McNichols Building


2013 New Work, Goodwin Fine Art, Denver, CO


2012 Gallery Artists, Summer Group Show, Goodwin Fine Art, Denver, CO


2008 Dairy Center for the Arts, Boulder, Couples Show, Boulder, CO


Harvey Meadows Gallery, Aspen, CO


2004 University of Miami, Exhibition of monotypes printed at Anderson Ranch, Miami, FL


1998 Robischon Gallery, Summer Abstraction Show, Denver, CO


1994 Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, Boulder, CO


1993 University of Colorado Galleries, Flow, Boulder, CO


1992 Robischon Gallery, Solo Exhibition, Denver, CO


1991 Byzantine Installation, Emmanuel Gallery, Auraria Campus, Denver, CO


1990 Colorado 1990, curated by Dianne Vanderlip, Curator, Modern and Contemporary Art,

Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO


Allene Lapides Gallery, Solo Exhibition, Santa Fe, NM


1989 Robischon Gallery, Solo Exhibition, Denver, CO


1988 Sangre de Christo Art Center, Pueblo, CO




2004- Guest lecturer, Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, MO
1991 Visiting Artist, University of Denver, Denver, CO
Assistant to Master Printer, Bud Shark, Sharks Inc., Lyons, CO
Visiting Artist, Patton Print Shop, Anderson Ranch, Aspen CO
1997 Colorado Council on the Arts, Committee member, grant selection panel for Visual Arts, Theater and Choral Music.
1997- Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, Exhibitions committee, Boulder, CO



1994 Boulder Farmers Market, City of Boulder, CO
A collaborative project with City of Boulder, members of the Farmers Market and local elementary school students to design, fabricate and install images of tea cups, tea pots and tea names into 13th Street proper, home to the Dushanbe Tea House, the Boulder Farmers Market and Art fairs.

1994 Lowry Laboratory, Public Art commission finalist,

1994 – Norwood Neighborhood, Boulder, CO, Site Plan Project
1996 Grant received from the Boulder Arts Council, and the Colorado Council on the Arts. Member of the artist design team for the neighborhood site plan development.

1990 – Denver International Airport, City of Denver, Colorado 1994 Co-managed a 1.5 million dollar public art commission, United Airlines Concourse, included the design and fabrication for 50,000 sq. ft. of floor area using terrazzo, stone, cast bronze and polished concrete. Management of this project included budgets, fabrication, cultural / historical fact checking and public relations.


Greenberg Trauig Law, Denver, CO
General Services Administration (GSA), Denver, CO
Harvey Hine Architects, Boulder, CO
Unicom Capital LLC, Denver, CO
One Boulder Plaza, Boulder, CO

Globe Fine Art  |  727 Canyon Road, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501 | 505.989.3888 |  © 2019 by Globe Fine Art

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