Tony Armadillo

 June 4 – July 23. 2020

Opening Reception:

June 4, 5:30 to 9 pm with ArtWalk

My Dreams   My Nightmares   My Time …… en La Tierra

Tony Armadillo is a painter and retired art teacher. Armadillo was an Art teacher with Corpus Christi ISD for twenty years. His students earned State and Gold Seal awards competing in V.A.S.E. and many earned scholarships to study art at respected institutions. Now retired, he has the ability to create artwork full time. 

Armadillo has been getting lots of attention for his work the past few years. His entry to the prestigious Smithsonian Outwin Portrait Competition 2022 reached the fourth round towards selection. He won 1st Place in both the All Members Exhibition at the Art Center of Corpus Christi and D’Art Center, Norfolk VA. Eight of his paintings were selected by Mayor Paulette Guajardo for display in her first exhibit of local artists in her chambers in City Hall. Armadillo’s work has recently been selected for exhibition at Las Laguna Gallery California, Purple Gold & White, Dallas TX, and GENESIS Political Art L.A. CA, and he was selected as a featured artist in STEAM Magazine.

“My challenge as an artist is not just to consider what is before me in nature such as a calm beautiful shoreline, majestic mountains, or a mystical landscape all of which I will paint, but for me, a greater challenge is to illustrate the powerful events that occur in life, my life, and which become nightmares. Nightmares that center on making another human being feel that they have less worth than others.  We hear and see the events on the evening news. Like a moth to a flame, I cannot pull away.  I am drawn in.  Then the events invade my dreams, and in many cases, become nightmares. These nightmares may haunt me throughout the day and night for days or even weeks.  They continue to manifest in my mind and foster a sense of fear, anger, despair, or rage, to a point that they become too real and I can sense that they are now trying to overpower me. I must now counter these negative entities through my art to gain some control and maybe bring change.  Failure to address the abuse, the lack of empathy, or a simple level of respect towards another person may consume me, and failure to address may lead me into a dark pit of despair. 

One example of this despair and consumption that took a toll on my emotions was the painting titled: School Age Wasteland XX. It marks the twentieth anniversary of the mass school shootings at Columbine. Twenty years … Twenty years!

Many of my works will focus on my culture, my family, my society. Painting allows me to convey the negative energy but transform this energy into positive energy. Positive energy because I believe that we as humans have the power to right what is wrong or unjust. Viewing one of my works may empower a viewer to improve our world; at least in their own immediate neighborhood.