Felix Vigil is a contemporary painter from the southwestern United States. He was born and raised on the Jemez Pueblo northwest of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Felix, who resides on Jemez Pueblo and is an active member of its community, relates, "Living at Jemez affords me the opportunity to live a …
Felix Vigil is a contemporary painter from the southwestern United States. He was born and raised on the Jemez Pueblo northwest of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Felix, who resides on Jemez Pueblo and is an active member of its community, relates, "Living at Jemez affords me the opportunity to live a very traditional life-style. The language is strong and the ceremonies are still a major part of our lives."
Felix has displayed his work in many prestigious exhibitions throughout the country. He recently received a first place ribbon for painting at the 2000 Santa Fe Indian Market. A former instructor at the Institute of American Indian Art in Santa Fe, Felix Vigils paintings are mixed medium collage on canvas. His imagery is based on Native American mythology and themes.
Over the years his work has become more esoteric in its symbolism and composition. In addition to the popular imagery of his southwest native culture, Felix has been incorporating motifs of Northwest Coast tribes into some of his paintings. Felix states: "There are many similarities in the philosophy of the designs between the Northwest Coast peoples and the Southwest. Paying homage to the animals is the central theme. The spirit of the animals is where our strength comes from. We emulate their character and pray that we can attain their powers.
"Within the scheme of the design there is an interdependency and relationship that exists between each design element and symbol. This speaks of the relationship that is evident in the world around us. Each creature is dependent on another to live and survive. And we, as humans, depend on these creatures to live."
From an early age Felix was exposed to the art of his father Francis, whom was a highly regarded Native American painter working in oils, watercolor and later in acrylics. When Felix reached his early twenties he attended the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland. He graduated in 1980 with a BFA in painting.