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If my paintings could speak --- and sing--- they would speak and sing in Spanish.

I was born and raised on the Texas-Mexico border, literally a couple of miles north of that huge divide, the Rio Grande. My childhood and early years influence my artwork greatly.


My mother was a midwife and I and my two sisters were her faithful assistants starting at age eleven or twelve. I witnessed lots of pain, joy, sorrow, and tenderness. The power of being the woman and of giving life affected me deeply and has influenced my art to this day.

I grew up with one foot in the Mexican culture and the other in the American culture and admired the great Mexican painters. My studies and a thirst for adventure took me to the Austin, Texas area where I discovered activism and the Chicano Art Movement. That launched me into a whole new world and fanned the flames of artistic passion. I did not go to art school. Instead, I set out to teach myself everything I could about art and painting. I am now in my early 50's and I continue to explore and discover new concepts, techniques, and possibilities in art. Mexico has always been and continues to be part of my daily reality. It fascinates me, it engages my imagination, and it influences my art at its deepest level.

Carmen R. Sonnes

2010 - present

2010 - present

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