On Nov. 17 and 18, Las Artistas will hold their annual arts and crafts show with the collaboration of UTEP students. The event will take place at the Epic Railyard Event Center at 2201 E. Mills Ave.
For the past 25 years, Las Artistas have worked in close collaborations with UTEP students from the jewelry and metals program, offering the students an opportunity to showcase their work as professional artists.
To celebrate 25 years of collaboration, UTEP and Las Artistas will hold a retrospective show on Friday, Nov. 16, at the Fox Fine Arts Center in room A154.
“Las Artistas was actually started by a former UTEP metals student and the program itself and its participation in the organization really comes into play with the big show that they do every fall,” said Jessica Tolbert, assistant professor in the metals department. “This year is pretty special. It marks the 25th anniversary of UTEP metals and Las Artistas collaborating together.”
For this exhibition, students will work with silver donated by the Las Artistas for the students to create pieces of jewelry to commemorate the 25 years of their collaboration.
“For this show we’re having a small Well, we’re having a retrospective show which will have 25 pieces, a piece for every year that we’ve collaborated with Las Artistas pulled from the collection of works that were once exhibited and sold at the show,” said UTEP metals teaching assistant Jess Rodriguez.
In past semesters, students would be given a theme to prepare for the show, this time it’s a more open-ended theme to give the students the freedom to express themselves through their work.
“In previous semesters, the way that we would kind of start the setup and prep for it was that we would build off of like the project that we would do right before it,” Rodriguez said. “For this one, it’s kind of like a build off of smaller scale production line jewelry. So it’s anything that you can make quick, if you can’t make it within under three hours, that it’s not a quick piece of production work.”
For students in the metals department showcasing their work next to other crafters and jewelers is a unique experience where they gain real-life experience outside the classroom.
“I think it’s really nice that this is kind of given to us because it is, they give us that opportunity to kind of see where we can branch out, whether we want to be a production line artists or be part of the people who do like the jewelry that you see that sold like rings and silver pieces,” Rodriguez said.
Even when artists can sometimes get discouraged, Tolbert said that success comes down to an individual, as it depends on how much effort you put into it, it’s probably how much you get out of it.
Both events will be free admission. For more information visit lasartistas.org
Claudia Flores may be reached at [email protected]