May 2010

In the Studio of Armando Mejia Godoy

Colorful cats with radiating vision, linear faces with shifting images, and ancient markings on new canvases were the paintings I saw on the walls of the restaurant across from my hotel in Managua, Nicaragua. Although it is a large restaurant with lots of seating, there was no one present except the owner reading the newspaper so I asked him about the work. It was his art.

Besides being part owner of the Godoy Family Restaurant, Armando Mejia Godoy is an archeologist, anthropologist, artist, and my tour guide among the galleries and a few artists of his country for the next couple of days. He has visited and shown his work in the United States. Coincidentally it was in the same town where we have Ford Fine Art.

The first stop is to visit a site where ancient human and animal footprints run alongside each other in the direction of the lake to escape a volcanic eruption. Then we visit the National buildings that suffered major damage in the earthquake of 1972. Roger de la Roche keeps a studio and classroom there as well as other artists and professors.

Galeria Peylaides has a nice collection of Armando Morales work and is alongside a bank that displays a fantastic tryp tik by Denis Nunez. Then out of the city into the mountains where Armando has his ranch style home and studio. His workspace is in the center of his home and the lives of his family carry-on around him.

Armando’s indigenous style graces the walls and tables in sketches, watercolors, oils and pastels. His palette stays limited with earth shades. The bookshelves are full with interesting books about ancient cultures and art supplies. He tells me about his plans to rent a new space in Managua for artists to work and sell their pieces. He has since opened that cooperative and I will visit it on my next trip to Nicaragua.

Later that evening we agree to meet again at the restaurant. This time every chair is occupied and the tables are full with beer, wine and food. His brother is a musician and will be performing with his traditional Nicaraguan band that night. The ancient symbols on the walls silently watch as the crowd sings along with the music and I dance with Armando and his lovely wife.

Suzanne Snider, May 2010

Jaguar-Ocelot: Dueno de la noche
America Nuestra Collection
Mixed media (petroglifo) on canvas,
47 x 82 cm

Armando Mejia Godoy

The studio of Armando Mejia Godoy

Mixed media (petroglifo) on canvas
48 x 62 cm

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