Luis Contreras was born and raised in Tijeras, New Mexico. His parents came from Durango, Mexico and made the life they wanted, with hard work and the hope of something better for their family. Although he didn’t grow up immersed in his Mexican culture, he knew it would play a big part in his life. He found art in just about anywhere he went, always dabbling in different mediums from charcoal drawings to watercolor and acrylic paintings, at one point attending the University of New Mexico to pursue a degree in the Arts. Along the way, Mexico always stayed close to his heart. Visiting Mexico Luis always noticed the bright colors everywhere, and even the architecture caught his eye. The admiration for the local art influenced him every time. After many years he found “La Catrina”. Originally known as “La Calavera Garbancera” illustrated by José Guadalupe Posada (A Mexican illustrator) and modeled after the Aztec “goddess of death” and “lady of Mictlan” she became a symbol in Día de Los Muertos. The Catrina has inspired many artists and is an important piece of the beautiful Mexican culture.
I missed getting in touch with my roots as a child… where my family came from and what our culture truly meant. It is beautiful, I know there is still so much to learn, but I admit I do not feel lost. I want to continue to make art for all walks of life to enjoy. It could be in sculptures of the Catrina through my eyes or in something as beautiful as a watercolor painting. I want to use my art to create what my words cannot.
Mi corazón esta feliz con la vida que vivo yo.