Latino Gen Z artists nationwide recognize the trailblazers for their contributions to the arts and their long lasting impact of seeing Hispanic artists appreciated.
Florida resident and 17-year-old Sureily Marestein said artwork enables expression of her Hispanic heritage and found Spanish surrealist artist Salvador Dali to be one of the main artists who inspired her because of his style of the creative mind and wonders.
Best known for his themes of the unconscious mind, Dali was most influential during the 20th century for his unique personality and wild imagery.
“It makes me feel joy,” said the first-year college student at New World School of the Arts in Miami. “That’s what pushes me to embrace my work. Not only to be recognized but for others to either feel connected or learn towards my artworks.”
Marestein’s artwork — which is included in The Dali Museum as a part of a 2021 statewide online art exhibit for students — is described as surreal and imaginative. She creates traditional art pieces with various mediums like prisma colors, ink or watercolor.
The exhibit’s theme is “delusions, desires, and delicacies” pushed students to create powerful artwork.
Pablo Piccaso had tremendous success with his art like his painting “The Old Guitarist” which uses themes of poverty and suffering while using only shades of blue, and “Guernica” an anti-war painting from the 1937 Spanish Civil War using muted gray tones.
At Indian Trail High School in Kenosha, Wisconsin, 17-year-old senior Stephanie Perez said Piccaso gave her the most inspiration when making her own art, while she was growing up through school when learning about influential modern day Hispanics because of his abstract painting. She also read books about him in order to learn more about why he painted and how he became so accomplished.
Piccaso helped invent Cubism which helped form even more techniques in abstract art, as well as collage. He opened up various new opportunities in creating different styles in visual reality, such as transforming people, places or objects into geometric shapes, as well as 29,000 pieces of artwork that are in global art museums.
“Their art can tell the story of my people,” Perez said, adding “Their sacrifices, their struggles, their over-comings, and their pain. They can portray a story unique to our history. And it’s important to be that inspiration to those who will see someone that looks like them [Hispanic individuals] who can still create amazing things regardless of their skin color or ethnic background.”
Marestein agreed, noting, “these artists will impact generations through their hard work and creativity.”