Jorge Izquierdo never dreamed he would become an artist when he first entered the Universidad Católica in Lima, Peru, more than 25 years ago. At the time, he wanted to be a graphic designer. But just as it happens for so many students, he changed his mind once he was introduced to the world of fine arts.
UHCL Professor of Fine Arts Nick de Vries and students benefited from Izquierdo’s change of heart when he brought his art and his skills to the university in February. Izquierdo, now a professor of art at his alma mater, also gained knowledge and experience during his visit.
“I’ve learned many things here,” asserts Izquierdo. “Many of the students I teach in Peru are much younger, and I’ve enjoyed the older students here and their skills. I’ve been able to appreciate the order and curriculum that Nick uses in his classes.”
Izquierdo met de Vries in May 2003 when de Vries traveled to Peru through the Pan American Cultural Exchange. He was so impressed by Izquierdo that he invited him to Houston.
“I think it is always helpful when students have an opportunity to meet artists like Jorge,” says de Vries. “It broadens their learning experience.”
Much of his ceramics work has been self-taught since ceramics was not originally offered at his university. As a student, he focused on sculpture, however, since mastering ceramics on his own, Izquierdo has been able to broaden the school’s art offerings and has made ceramics his concentration.
“I took courses with specialists to learn about ceramics,
and I worked for a studio to make molds and models of the pottery,” explains
Izquierdo. “I want to make ceramics a major part of
While leaving his young daughter for a month has been a challenge, Izquierdo says he was excited with the idea of coming to UHCL and working with de Vries again. And, likewise, UHCL faculty and students were thrilled.
“The School of Human Sciences and Humanities sponsored his stay while at UHCL,” said de Vries. “The school strives to expose students to different cultures and artists.”
The Hamman Foundation also provided funds to support this initiative.
Izquierdo’s visit marks one of several trips made to UHCL by international artists from Slovakia, Mexico and other faraway places.
In addition to Izquierdo’s work at UHCL, he also has experienced life in the United States for the first time.
“I love the opportunity to work in a different place…know another culture and environment,” says Izquierdo. “It’s a beautiful place, and I hope to come back.”
Maintained By: Sheshe Giddens
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