Tex-Mex artistic inspiration: San Benito Museum to host Gallery Talk

SAN BENITO — Growing up in Brownsville, the late Carlos G. Gomez’s artwork was inspired by the Tex-Mex culture of the Valley.

Brightly colored buildings and the atmosphere of Mexican border towns influenced his style of colors, lines and imagery of his work.

Although the artist is no longer present, his legacy lives on through his work.

Brownsville Artist Noel Palmenez will discuss Gomez’s artwork from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, June 20 at the San Benito Cultural Heritage Museum’s free Gallery Talk.

During the Gallery Talk, Palmenez will discuss the ideas and iconography of the museum’s latest exhibit, The Handsome Pepper:  A Reflective Observation.

The exhibit features large-scale paintings, prints and an installation of concrete collage of small paintings created by Gomez.

San Benito Cultural Arts Director Luis Contreras said the Gallery Talk series is an opportunity to meet the experts that redefine our perspectives on the world via art, history, music, and/or performance through the techniques, processes, and the inspiration behind the works on exhibit.

About the artists

Gomez taught painting and drawing at the University of Texas at Brownsville/Texas Southmost College (TSC) and the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley for 30 years.

He died in 2016 when he was 64 years old.

While studying art at TSC, Palmenez met Gomez.

Gomez guided Palmenez throughout his studies while he was earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts and two Master of Fine Arts degrees.

The purpose of Gallery Talks

Contreras said Gomez’s exhibit “celebrates the beauty that for thousands of years dominated the new world.”

“The peppers, like the original people of the Americas, vary in nature,” he explained. “The pepper icon was chosen due to its impact globally when Columbus introduced it to the rest of the world.”

Contreras believes Gallery Talks are important to offer because they give the community an opportunity to engage with artists, ask questions and discuss the artwork.

“The exhibit is definitely something to look at and engage with in the sense that you have this three-dimensional artwork on concrete that kind of invades your space,” he explained. “So, it’s something really fascinating aside from the imagery.”

The Handsome Pepper:  A Reflective Observation will be on display until August 2.

For more information about the Gallery Talk, contact the Cultural Heritage Museum at (956) 281-0810.


WHAT — Handsome Pepper: A Gallery Talk with Noel Palmenez

WHEN — Thursday, June 20 from 6 to 8 p.m.

WHERE — 250 East Heywood Street, San Benito

COST — Free

For more information, contact The San Benito Cultural Heritage Museum at (956) 281-0810.