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Passions on display at Viva El Arte

The Shafter Library and Learning Center hosted Viva El Arte, a fine arts show on Friday afternoon, featuring artists displaying their works, including paintings, sketches, sculpture and photographs.

One of the featured artists was Nora Pineda. Pineda grew up in the area of Shafter known by many as the Mexican Colony, now La Colonia. Pineda said that she is proud of her heritage and she puts her culture and passion into her work.

Pineda had several sculptures on display, each with its own story. According to her sister Marianne Padilla, Pineda suffered a stroke last year and has not done any art this past year. But Pineda is still active and is passionate about her creations.

Pineda said that her art is the result of her being a little girl playing in the dirt outside her house. "I was five years old, sitting in my dress, playing with the dirt and mud. I remember building mounds of dirt. I smoothed out the sides, took out the twigs and rocks, and made pots out of it." That was the beginning of her lifelong passion for sculpture.

Another of the artists featured was Jose Silva. He said that he has always been interested in art and uses photographs, memory and other things for his inspiration for his pieces.

Silva paints in a unique way with some of his pieces.

In a portrait he did of a young native woman, Silva used a pallet knife, instead of brush strokes. It gave the piece more texture than with a brush. "This one I used the brush just a small percentage of the time. I wanted to give the work a lot of texture and it stands out so much better," he explained.

Also in the show there was a large number of art pieces from local students, including from Richland School District and GROW Academy.

This festival was very well attended and, according to Cinco de Mayo Chairman Deanna Rodriguez-Root, "This will become a regular event, alongside the Cinco de Mayo Festival."


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