From a young age, Patricia Perez exhibited a profound interest in art, inspired by her maternal grandmother’s crafting and garment-making from hand-drawn patterns. At the tender age of nine, she delved into oil painting on canvas by observing re-runs of Bill Alexander’s “The Joy of Oil Painting” on PBS. Her artistic journey led her to study at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and complete her art degree at Northeastern Illinois University, where she also pursued a minor in Latino and Latin American Studies, an influential element in her artistic expression.

During her time at NEIU, Patricia discovered her passion for sharing the creative process with communities, offering visual arts classes, and engaging with everyday people. Hailing from the Guatemala and Puerto Rico diaspora, she has been a dedicated mentor and educator, empowering students and establishing platforms for exploring identity and social justice issues in Chicago.

While her connection with CRLN is recent, her impact has been remarkable. In May 2023, she led a collaborative mural project commemorating the people who were martyrs and disappeared during Guatemala’s Internal Armed Conflict. Presenting the mural at a special event, she honored their memory and stories. Subsequently, in October, Patricia co-led a pilot mural initiative with Red COMAL, one of our partner organizations in Honduras. This project initiated with online Zoom classes focusing on color theory and history, culminating in her journey to Siguatepeque, Honduras. There, she provided support and collaborated with community members and youth from Red COMAL, shedding light on historical injustices and uplifting the work of people in the community and the work of Red COMAL over the last 30 years. This pilot program is very special because we are celebrating with Red COMAL 30 years of work in Honduras through the transformative power of art.

Presently, Patricia is engrossed in her upcoming painting series, drawing inspiration from the stories of migrant children and their families.

Evelyn Andrade

Evelyn Andrade has blogged 110 posts