Sunday

 Well, as we begin a new week (and a step closer to the Christmas holidays) I am happy to report that the Q is much, much better! Husband and I, however, are not so fortunate. We have all fallen like dominoes, and so forgive me if this post is a bit scatterbrained!
 First, a lost set of photos from the fall which I just happen to like, because they are so typical of Q's unique style (and also because it is very nearly this warm now here on the Front Range of the Rockies, so it's not so very different! We continue to have a very mild winter, and could definitely use any excess snow that anyone cares to send us for the Holidays! winkwink Even a flake or two will do!)
Also, a couple of weeks ago we finally sought out these murals by my father in the entrance of a school here in Denver.
 We have been hearing about these murals second-hand for years now, and honestly weren't sure whether to believe in their existence or not. So it was a bit of a delight to finally see them in person. 
They were in a difficult spot to photograph - at least in overcast winter light - but oh, was it a thrill to see my father's early style so eloquently wrought, and so close at hand!
These small murals were made a very, very long time ago, when my late father was very, very young. He was early in his career as an artist, and working side by side with his first wife-to-be (I think that they were so young as to not be married yet) when they made these paintings. I'm guessing that they were made in the early to mid 1940s, either under the WPA initiative or the lesser-known "Section of Fine Arts".
On the opposite wall from these shown are two panels by his soon-to-be first wife, Jennie Magafan, who died tragically of a stroke in her early 20s. 
I think that they probably painted these murals at a very young age, before they were married, in their late teens or early 20s, while still apprenticed to famed Colorado artist Frank Mechau, so it's kind of amazing to have seen these paintings in person.

 There are very few of these "new deal" murals still in evidence, and it's hard to know how long they will last before some of these buildings are scraped or refurbished, so we made sure to photograph them in detail, along with the signatures. Here is my dad's signature as a very, very young man, back when he still called himself "Ed Chavez". Later in his career, when he became a Fulbright scholar, and was shown in many major museums in the US and Europe, he signed his paintings as "Edward Chavez". How strange it is to see this handwriting of his as a very young man, just at the outset of his illustrious career.
And finally...what's going on in my own studio, where the latest art doll - my Little Mermaid - has been completed, along with her hand-illustrated pen and ink background of stormy seas.

4 comments:

Natalie Thiele said...

Glad Q is well again, sorry you and your husband are sick now.
I love your father's WPA artwork. It's such a rich slice of the time it was created in.
San Francisco has WPA murals in Coit Tower and in a bar/restaurant on the Great Highway, across from Sutro's. I haven't been there in over 30 years, but I did read that the bar was completely remodeled several years ago murals intact.

kenza said...

So happy Q is feeling better, I hope you will too soon.
The paintings are beautiful...
And your latest creations Maia are incredible! Congratulations!

Loree said...

I had no idea your father was such a famous artist. What an amazing legacy.

Yoli said...

Maia I hope you and Mike feel better soon. I love your father's work, everytime you expose us to it, I am in awe all over again. You have two very talented parents it is evident you inherited their talents. Your dolls, along with your other artwork will become a collector's item through the years. Exquisite.