Artist of the issue: Valeria Guillen-Sanchez

Laura Mata

More stories from Laura Mata


Artwork Courtesy of Valeria Guillen-Sanchez

This nostalgic art piece portrays Guillen-Sanchez being exposed to both American and Mexican environments as she grew up.

Both at home and at school, senior Valeria Guillen-Sanchez engages in different kinds of art. Inspired by her older sister, who has been creating art since she was in high school, Guillen-Sanchez has been creating art since the 6th grade. Guillen-Sanchez views art as a fun, therapeutic form of expression.

“I would watch my sister do art all the time growing up and it made me want to try it. She is a big influence to me in many different aspects,” Guillen-Sanchez said.

Collaging is Guillen-Sanchez’s favorite style of art. Collage is an art form made up of overlapping pieces of material, such as photographs, fabric, coloured and textured paper and other types of mixed media.

The artwork portrays a quote from her mother after her mom had warned her about getting hurt. Translating to, “I told you I’m not going to help you stupid girl.” (Artwork Courtesy of Valeria Guillen-Sanchez)

Since her freshman year, Guillen-Sanchez’s art work has been displayed in multiple art shows, including WJ art shows and an art show held at Glen Echo during March.

Guillen-Sanchez’s most meaningful works are those that relate to her personal life, heritage, life experiences and things that represent who she has become.

“I have a painting that represents my Latino heritage. It relates to how my mom would raise me and teach me right from wrong when I was growing up as a kid,” Guillen-Sanchez said.

Social and cultural values can influence one’s take and viewpoint on art. Inspired and influenced by her Latino heritage, Guillen-Sanchez has been introduced to the world of vibrant colors.

Growing up with two different cultures, Guillen-Sanchez created a masked character to symbolize her struggles with each culture. (Artwork Courtesy of Valeria Guillen-Sanchez)

As a rising college student, Guillen-Sanchez plans to obtain a career in visual arts, with an intended major in Film and Media Arts. She will be attending Temple University and is very excited to start a new beginning.

Senior Batchimeg Sukhbat, one of Gullen-Sanchez’s closest friends, has always supported Gullen-Sanchez’s work. Taking on art together has strengthened their friendship and made art events and accomplishments even more enjoyable for the two.

“It’s been nice creating artwork with Valeria from the first grade to senior year. The growth and development together over the years has created one of my best friendships,” Sukhbat said.