Rosa Chavez was born in Michoacan, an agricultural state, in Mexico. The environment she grew up in has determined the sort of subject matter she enjoys to paint today. Her art has been greatly influenced by natural elements such as the sun, wind, water, and living organisms. They are inspirational to her because they are the fountain of life; without organic nature, there wouldn’t be anything else in our world.
When Rosa was a child, she enjoyed walking around in nature collecting the flowers, leaves and twigs that would catch her attention. These were the first art materials that she would arrange into beautiful collages made of purely nature-found elements.
Her playful nature and thirst to see the world differently caused her to look at her surroundings through a unique lens. She often would squint her eyes and blend the colors together to catch a glimpse of what others could not, turning an ordinary day into a living painting.
As she grew older and moved to Mexico City, she learned that most people didn’t have contact or a relationship with nature. Their connection to nature was limited by human-made spaces. The wildest nature many encountered were the ocean or national parks.
Throughout the years she worked with various common art mediums like charcoal, pencil, pastel and oil. Pastels and watercolors have been her favorite medium for relaxation and personal work. As she grew into becoming the artist that she is today, she found that oils and acrylic were her favorite mediums to create paintings for public exhibitions.
For the past 30 years, Rosa’s work has been exhibited in galleries, art shows and art festivals throughout the country, winning awards in Canada and the US. She is well known for a large body of work focused on European scenery.
Created during her years of travel between Europe and the US, she was inspired by views found in France, Italy, Brussels, and Spain, amongst others. After years of painting romanticized European landscapes, a family vacation introduced her to Hawaii’s tropical landscapes which then sparked a new series of paintings.
Not only did her visual focus change but she also changed her medium. Tired of having to wait for oils to dry and their heavy, chemical fumes filling up the studio, she moved on to work with acrylics.
Acrylics are a key element to her current technique because they allow her to work quickly. Her favorite part of the process is mixing the colors of the painting directly on the canvas itself. She works without a palette, which has trained her to clean her tools on the canvas itself and quickly grab another color. This enables her to not lose her inspiration. This technique gives her work visual energy, as there isn’t a pause in between; it is created with constant motion. Like a stream in a river, it keeps flowing until it hits an ocean.
Rosa lives with and has shared a studio with her husband for the past 30 years. They constantly feed off of each other’s creativity and inspiration, enjoying conversations together of their mutual love for the arts and nature, or literally grabbing a brush and painting on each other’s piece. As artists have witnessed in art school, many teachers, students, and partners work with one another by giving honest supportive critiques that help each other grow.