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Art student paints a bright future

Veronica Enriquez

Young local artist are being encouraged to dazzel their art in a revitalized city.

One artist making a movement in the scene is Fabian Uribe, senior studio art major. He was able to present his first solo exhibition Sept. 26 at The Station Urban Offices located at 500 W. Overland Ave.

“I would constantly catch myself creating new things,” Uribe said. “People would take notice and I would always receive great feedback. I knew I had some sort of talent.”

It wasn’t until Uribe enrolled at UTEP and took his first drawing course that he realized art would become his major.

“I was hooked ever since, and art became my major after being influenced by my professors,” Uribe said. “The passion and dedication towards their work as artists really inspired me to choose this career.”

Uribe’s exhibition was showcased during a Last Thursdays Art Walk—a collaboration to showcase the contemporary art scene of El Paso—sponsored by the city’s Museum and Cultural Affairs Department, in order for the community to experience the cultural renaissance that has emerged in Downtown El Paso.

According to Uribe, his exhibition is infused with different outfits regarding universal aspects of individual identity.

“I try to challenge concrete definitions of concepts within identity such as religion, sexuality and culture,” Uribe said. “I also explore the dichotomy of an uneasy world and dealing with individuality in today’s society and culture.”

All of the art pieces showcased in Uribe’s exhibition are literal and figurative representations of himself through the use of different media—an extensive collection of work thattook him approximately four years to finish.

“In this exhibition, I decided to show both traditional and non-traditional examples of painting, drawing, printmaking and mixed media,” Uribe said.

However, it is not his technique alone that sets him apart from other artists, but the marriage of the concept and the material.

“I do a lot of research before beginning my work. I believe the idea behind the piece is what makes it strong; and the integration of materials and technique only make the concept stronger,” Uribe said.

According to Therese Bauer, drawing lecturer, Uribe’s ambition has led him to be more willing to experiment with unfamiliar materials and methods through the course of each studio art class.

“His altered books and the series of four light-box portraits are good examples of this willingness to move beyond what he has already mastered,” Bauer said.

Although Bauer was already familiar with the works in the show—having seen them in critique or in studios of the art building—they were all the more impressive to Bauer, when they were presented in a gallery-like setting.

“I was very impressed by his exhibition,” Bauer said. “He did an excellent job of installing the show, making thoughtful choices as to how to group his pieces and where to display the various works included in his exhibition.”

Bauer, who has known Uribe for  two years, said that there are a few characteristics of his art that are consistent throughout his work, regardless of materials or process.

“One, is the very meticulous quality of execution––for example the careful cutting of the book pages or the form-building gestural pen work in his figurative drawings,” Bauer said. “The other is his focus on personal and public identity. This conceptual aspect of his work is what elevates it above a mere technical display and gives his work more power.”

Uribe’s drive, perseverance and passion toward art has led him to be placed among 12 esteemed local artists such as Lyuba Titovets, Margarita Cabrera, UTEP alumni Suzi Davidoff and Anna Jacquez, who were selected to be part of the UTEP Pickaxe Celebration—an event sponsored by Government Employees Credit Union. Through this event, each artist will get a chance to cover a 6-foot blank canvas, shaped like a pick, and turn it into pieces of art, thus, sharing a memory, a story or a movement that invokes UTEP’s 100 years of existence.

“It’s an honor for me to be represented by my school and to be showcased in UTEP’s centennial,” Uribe said. “It is definitely one of the highlights of my career.”

Bauer said that the honor was very well deserved.

“Fabian has been a very productive, disciplined and dedicated young artist, so it’s fitting that the UTEP community is recognizing his accomplishments,” she said.

The 12 pickaxes will be auctioned off in 2014 as part of UTEP’s centennial celebration to raise money for the R. C. Morgan Scholarship Fund, which will benefit UTEP students.

Uribe continues to draw and is already working on his next exhibition, which will focus on similar topics relating to identity.

“In 10 years, I see myself with a master’s degree, owning a studio space and a home,” Uribe said. “I hope to still keep working as a conceptual artist on commissions as well as exhibitions and hopefully ending up as an art professor in a prominent university.”

Uribe’s solo exhibition will continue to be showcased at The Station Urban Offices until Oct. 26, followed by the third-annual art auction “Amor por Juarez,” which will take place at 7 p.m. on Nov. 2 at the Sotoa Lofts Building 500 W. Overland Ave.

For more information about Uribe, visit or email him at [email protected].

Andrea Acosta may be reached at [email protected].

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About the Contributor
Veronica Enriquez
Veronica Enriquez, Photo Editor
Veronica Enriquez is a senior at the University of Texas at El Paso majoring in multimedia journalism with a minor in art. Currently, she is working as the photo editor at The Prospector and helps out at her church with the youth. Coming from a family of photographers and journalists she grew an interest for photography from a very young age and during her sophomore year at Franklin High School she began to have an interest for journalism. Veronica simply loves telling people’s stories through photography, print, audio or video. Some of her hobbies include going on overseas mission trips, playing music, helping out at her church, spending time with her fiancée, friends and family.
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Art student paints a bright future