For as long as she can remember, Franceska Alvarado has been an artist. Growing up in a household where creativity was encouraged and fostered, it didn’t take much for Alvarado to feel comfortable exploring the act of making and creating. She excelled at art classes in school, and was often called upon when teachers and classmates needed someone to draw something. “I would get asked to draw something or make a sketch since I was the ‘artist’ in the class,” Alvarado recalled. And while that recognition felt special and welcomed, she knew even then her passion went far beyond making doodles in primary school.
“I took my art more seriously than my peers,” she said. “My art education didn’t stop at the classroom; it continued at home.” For Alvarado, art was always more than just an extracurricular activity, and she often refers to her family home as a “creative community” where ideas were shared and critical feedback was given regarding the work each family member produced. Because art was valued so highly among the people she loves most, it provided her the motivation to pursue her Bachelor of Fine Art. Now in her senior year at TAMU–CC, Alvarado has fine-tuned her skill set to a point where she finally feels it is appropriate to call herself an artist.
Alvarado has used her time in school as an “experimental place,” where there is space to allow her to discover who she is as an artist. When it comes to art, her culture acts as a starting point.
“A lot of my early work was about self-identity and tying my Hispanic roots to art and exploring those avenues,” she said. “Versus in my everyday life and living in Corpus, there are [Hispanic] influences everywhere. Putting it into a fine art perspective, it’s something different for me … it’s about going beyond identity and focusing on my internal feelings apart from my Hispanic heritage, which you’ll see in my new body of work.”
Next on the horizon for Alvarado is her senior showcase, which she will have completed by the time this issue goes to print. In front of the entire art faculty, Alvarado will prepare a 20-minute talk about her craft and present her latest body of work, which she describes as highlighting the mental state of anxiety and big internal emotions she’s dealt with, exploring them with a subtle aesthetic.
It’s not often we get a chance to witness an important artist in the making — though quite frankly, in many respects, Alvarado has already arrived. Young, driven and superbly talented, Alvarado’s work is poised to transcend Corpus Christi’s fine art circles.