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Sylvania instructor profiled on OPB’s ‘Art Beat’
Story by Kate Chester and photos by James Hill.
Gene Flores, who teaches printmaking and life drawing courses at PCC Sylvania, recently was featured on “Art Beat,” Oregon Public Broadcasting’s half-hour, Emmy Award-winning weekly signature series dedicated to local artists and their work. The segment aired Thursday, Jan. 15, with a repeat airing Sunday, Jan. 18.
On staff at PCC since 2001, Flores’ work was first seen by KC Cowan, “Art Beat” host and segment producer, when she came across his work on exhibit at Print Arts Northwest, a gallery formerly based in Portland’s Pearl District. Excited by what she saw, Cowan brought a crew to the Sylvania campus last spring to film Flores in class with students. A second filming took place in his home studio last summer.
“It was fun to be on ‘Art Beat,'” said Flores, “and definitely outside the norm of what I usually do day-to-day.”
Flores was born and raised in El Paso, Texas, the youngest of eight children. He received his bachelor’s degree in fine arts from the University of Texas at El Paso, followed by a master’s degree in arts from the University of Iowa with an emphasis in printmaking. After teaching at both universities, followed by work as a preparator at the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art in Iowa, Flores migrated west to La Center, Wash., where he lives with his wife, Joan.
His works are self-portraits, a reflection of his life that ranges from the pain associated with his father’s death to the joys of simply being alive. Mythological creatures are combined with human and animal characters in much of Flores’ work, offering a window to “another world” that vacillates between the surreal and the absurd.
For more about Flores, visit www.geneflores.com.