Alfredo Arreguín (January 30, 1935 – April 24, 2023) was a Mexican-American painter. For sixty years, he worked out of his adopted home of Seattle, Washington, producing his signature style of pattern paintings that sourced his Mexican culture and his experience in the Pacific Northwest. He was known as a leader in the Latin American art scene.
- The arts are a wonderful medicine for the soul.
- Interview (2021)
- When I later came to the U.S., I was a foreigner. And I wasn’t part of Mexico, either. I didn’t feel like I fit in anywhere.
- Interview (2001)
- We were poor, but we were happy. We didn’t have much, but we were painting.
- Interview (2001)
- (What Art means to You?) Art is life. it is a vessel that allows me to express my perception of the world, my sense of beauty and my social concerns–which, I believe, are shared by many other persons around the world.
- (What is Your inspiration?) My inspiration comes from many sources. Clearly, Mother Nature has always occupied an important position in this regard, which is tied up to my early experiences in Mexico. In addition, the patterns used in Mexican arts and crafts—ceramics, textiles, tiles, masks, etc.—also have been present in the development of my mental and artistic imaginary from the very beginning. Other elements that I can mention are indigenous myths and legends, the expressions of other artists from various cultures, iconic historical figures, and the works of poets and other writers, some of whom are my friends. Obviously, my surroundings are also a big source of inspiration, as my series of paintings on the Pacific Northwest clearly show.
- (What branch of art is the closest to Your heart?) Painting. Even though I’ve tried my hand at drawing and ceramic sculpture in different moments, the vast majority of my works are oil paintings.
- (Any advice for young artists beginning their professional life?) Work hard, find your own voice, and persevere.
- For me my works are like my children, and I love them all equally...I love all colors and every one of my paintings has something I like. It is like my children, each one of them has something I like, and although they all are wonderful and different gifts, I love them equally.
- When I was a kid, I watched Tarzan movies. At that time the movies were black and white, and I wanted to put color in them. That was a big stimulus for me, and it made my imagination work.
- I love diversity in Nature. I appreciate the difference in colors on people, animals, and flowers. My walks in Nature stimulate my mind, and make it easier for me to get ideas for my paintings. My imagination helps me to discover hidden images in nature, and I include them on my canvases. Those little ghosts frequently get enhanced as I paint, and they appear and disappear on my paintings.
- Art has always been in my life…As a young student in Mexico, I had no favorite artists. I was mostly impressed by the folk art in the Mexican markets. My grandma used to take me to the markets where I was fascinated by the native crafts. The designs and patterns on blankets, baskets, pottery, jewelry, and toys were my inspiration. Later on, I learned about the Mexican muralists that painted beautiful images on the walls of public buildings. Diego Rivera, Orozco, Tamayo, and others. Being born in Mexico has made my life richer, I feel fortunate to be able to speak the beautiful Spanish language, and I feel I came to the USA with a wonderful culture.