COVID Collaborative – August 2021

COVID Collaborative, Joe Mariscal & Leslie Troutman

Exhibition Dates: August 7-26, 2021

Reception (First Saturday): August 7, 2021

Artist Statement

During the COVID pandemic, communication with friends and family has become very difficult, we have had to rely mainly on social media to keep in touch with each other. To fill the void, two of my artist friends started drawing at least one self-portrait daily. Inspired by their work, I decided to give it a try. Although I have not drawn for many years, I mainly work with clay, I soon became obsessed. I took selfies of myself making faces and started drawing up to 4 or 5 a day, sometimes more. I have to say the majority of the portraits look nothing like me, but I was pleased with the results none the less. I then started to include COVID masks on my portraits. I then requested family members put on a mask and take a selfie so I could draw someone other than myself.

My soon to be 18 year old granddaughter Leslie Troutman, who is a very talented artist in her own right, has dozens of sketch books filled with wonderful detailed colorful images of her own personal expressions. I decided to surprise her by having an online printing company put some of her imagery on some covid masks. This naturally led to our collaboration with my black and white masked portraits to her filling the blank masks with her own colorful, detailed, precocious, and personal imagery. We are very pleased with our work together and will continue working together on larger and more extensive pieces. This will be Leslie’s first public display of her personal artwork.

About the Artists

Joe Mariscal

Joe Mariscal retired from teaching art at San Joaquin Delta Community College in Stockton, California in 2015. Mariscal has taught in very diverse venues to include community college an art program for developmentally disabled adults, a state prison, the National University of Honduras to workshops in Brazil.

Mariscal has lived in Mexico, has visited Guatemala, Honduras, Brazil, France, Spain, Italy, Japan, Hong Kong and Viet Nam. (Mariscal served in Viet Nam in 1969 and returned to visit in 2015)

Mariscal has a B.A in Art History from The Universidad de las Americas in Cholula, Puebla Mexico and a Master of Arts degree from California State University Sacramento.

Primarily known for his figurative ceramic sculpture, these collaborative portrait drawings with his granddaughter are a departure from the area of 3D. The two images are our collaborative effort. The black and white drawing is mine the designs and color in the Covid masks are Leslie’s. There are at least 10 of these collaborative portraits so far. There will be larger images that are in process. And I have 11 or more of my own images like these (pictured).

Leslie Troutman

Leslie Troutman is an 18 year-old recently-graduated alumna of Bear Creek High School in Stockton, California, where she was born and raised. She currently attends Dela Community College, from which her grandfather retired.

Leslie hopes to spend 2 years at community college then transfer to a California college to study some facet of the field of agriculture.  She is exceedingly influenced by the natural world and the connections that humans have spiritually to the earth.  Such ideas can be seen in her work.

Though disturbing, Leslie also enjoys incorporating questionable imagery into her pieces that might prompt disgust in some viewers.  The audience is to be assured that she is mentally stable as of the moment.