mateo romero

“At the turn of the millennium, I remain a Pueblo Luddite. I am infatuated with fountain pens, analog clocks, sable brushes, oil paint, and clay and minerals from the ground. I inherently distrust bureaucracies (both Indian and non), corporations, electronic media, lawyers, governments, sunbelts, gunbelts, and the IRS. About the only common ground, I find with my colleagues is Tribal government (which also seems shifty at times), a necessary evil where social interaction and positive change can occur.

I have always felt driven to make art, at an early age by my artist’s family around me, later by my narcissistic need to say something to whoever listens, and finally as a lifelong vocation and commitment to changing the world. I feel that I have been chosen by the work.

For me, the act of making art is like discovering the innocence of childhood again framed within adulthood. The act of losing oneself completely, becoming immersed in the medium, and the mark-making process is as old as time itself, unselfconscious, like marks scratched in the overhang of the canyon walls. From these periods where I close the studio door and lose myself come to my most productive works.

I have been seduced by muscular, sensual painting. I am married to gesture, movement, colors that breathe, impasto palette knife work, and thin washes of carefully drawn in paint. These formal qualities of easel painting have remained the signature elements of my work, and I will continue to be faithful to them. They have contained a philosophical framework of how I view the world around me.