Local Artist draws the border life in El Paso

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Local Artist draws the border life in El Paso

Maria Ramos Pacheco, Contributor

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Patrick Gabaldon is an attorney and a local artist in El Paso, better known for his colorful paintings about El Paso desert areas and the cartoon drawings of former congressman Beto O’Rourke and U.S. Rep. Veronica Escobar.

In 2016, Gabaldon started to create more work related to politics, when El Pasoan and Democrat Beto O’Rourke was in the race for Senate against Republican Ted Cruz. Gabaldon wanted to show his support to O’Rourke, so he decided to do it in a way he loved the most, doodling.

Gabaldon sketched out a cartoon of O’Rourke. People liked it so much that he started to produce a number of T-shirts the cartoon and also created posters for O’Rourke’s campaign.

“I became frustrated with others trying to tell the world what the border is – what our community is. I wanted to create work that represents the beauty and unique spirit found here in the El Paso community,” Gabaldon said.

Gabaldon wants to show the world the reality about El Paso and the people in the community with his art and he strongly disagrees with the national emergency President Trump declared.

“Trump’s position of wanting to build the wall here in El Paso is ridiculous,” Gabaldon said. “There is already fencing. There are already massive amounts of CBP and tech along our border, specifically here in El Paso. I don’t acknowledge the premise set by the president and his supporters because true progress and real security at the border exist beyond moronic catchphrases. What we need is more compassion, more aid to those countries the migrants are fleeing and more intelligence from our elected officials.”

Gabaldon strongly believes that art is a great way to express the beauty of El Paso and that with his work and other local artists’ people can have a better understanding of what the border is like. 

“El Paso is not a response to Trump, but a reflection of love for our culture and region,” Gabaldon said. “Whether it is my colorful cacti or the black and white faces created by Christin Apodaca, the art on the border persists in protest precisely because it is proud of El Paso.”

Gabaldon will continue to create new artwork for the2020 election and he will support any candidate whether they are Republican or Democrat. Gabaldon said he wants to doodle a candidate that is thoughtful and stands for what he believes is right and equal for everybody.

His work has been exhibited in restaurants, art galleries, the El Paso International Airport, Southwest University Ballpark and the University of Texas at El Paso.

Gabaldon sends a message to all UTEP students who can vote and make a difference for El Paso and the country.

“Decisions made at the local and national level affect you whether you like it or not. It is up to us to take ownership of our futures,” Gabaldon said.

You can find his work on his Instagram @gabaldonart and his web page at www.gabaldonart.com.

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