Mesa to Mesa
Published January 13, 2018
ALBUQUERQUE – Join self-taught emerging digital artist Jonathan Juanico of Acoma Pueblo at the opening reception of his debut exhibition titled “Degrees of Tradition” on January 19, 5–8 p.m. at the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center (IPCC) located at 2401 12th St NW, Albuquerque. The exhibit will launch with an opening reception in the IPCC’s Artists Circle Gallery, attended by the artist, as well as IPCC museum staff. Exhibit is free with museum admission, and runs through Apr. 8, 2018.
Juanico’s digital graphic designs transform Acoma symbols, stories, and aspects of the natural environment into cutting-edge and distinctive imagery honoring the legacy and traditions of Acoma culture and arts. His body of work merges his Native American heritage with his AutoCAD training and experience as a Geographic Information System specialist.
“Jonathan’s approach to his art is unique in his technique, and yet traditional in his inspiration – a true blending of traditional and contemporary elements in this ever-changing digital world,” says Monique Fragua (Jemez), Vice President of Operations.
Solitude to Prayer
“We are very excited to be bringing in Jonathan Juanico as an emerging artist,” says Rachel Moore (Hopi), Curator of Exhibitions. “This is a great opportunity for us to support the work and growth of a Pueblo artist, to present his unique take on Pueblo traditions to a wider audience. Jonathan will be bringing a whole new flavor to the space with his graphic works that are accessible to all.”
Juanico says it has been a challenge completing all of the tasks necessary for his first show by himself, in addition to working a full-time job, raising children, and commuting to Albuquerque from Acomita every day. Despite these challenges, Juanico is enthusiastic about the show. “This is a major stepping stone, and it’s exciting,” he says.
Juanico is interested in expanding into designing for film, music, and interior spaces, and hopes this show will lead to those kinds of opportunities. Regardless of the outcome, he says, “I feel like I’m blessed already,” in part because his designs inspire his young daughters to draw and continue to explore their creativity and cultural heritage. “Whatever comes, I will remain this humble person,” he adds.
“Degrees of Tradition” will have Juanico’s works for sale, along with a puzzle of his artwork created especially for the exhibit. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the IPCC uses such shows as opportunities to promote a contemporary Pueblo artist’s career while providing art collectors with an avenue to support the IPCC’s own permanent collections and curatorial work.