Marco Villegas: Immigrant Waves  

On View: April 21st, through June 3rd, 2017
Zoya Tommy Gallery, 4102 Fannin St., Houston, TX 77004 



 The exhibition Marco Villegas: Immigrant Waves serves as a commentary on the growing questions about how people and ideas move across the world. The work of Marco Villegas is of an artist with a singular vision in mind, to explore the nature of imagery in life through a combination of printmaking and painting. Villegas, a prolific artist who addresses the scope of humanity in his work, has been exploring the boundaries between the surface of the canvas and the outside world for over 25 years.

The works in Immigrant Waves allow viewers to travel between both contemporary and historical notions around the concepts of “the wave” and migration. Villegas’ striking use of color, numerous layers, and the collapsing of space creates a deceptively simple, but unique, visual idiom. In Immigrant Waves, an exhibition of five large, uniquely shaped canvases and several smaller works, Villegas presents a reworking of past projects to address the current polemics of identity, space, and movement.

In addition with being a printmaker and painter, Villegas is also a craftsman. The irregularly shaped canvases in this exhibition were constructed by Villegas in the early 2000’s. After rediscovering the canvases, Villegas decided to reconstruct them, leaving some of the original work and overlaying new imagery combined with the old.

In an interview with the Huffington Post, Marco states, “This is the first time I’ve thought of myself as an immigrant. I have always had a fascination with waves, but now these waves have new meaning. Waves, birds, animals, humanity itself is based on migration. Ideas migrate. This is what led me to call this latest series of paintingsImmigrant Waves – to underscore the importance and inevitability of immigrants and immigration to culture and humanity.”


Marco Villegas was born in Monterrey, Mexico, but left at the age of three and settled in Houston, Texas where he attended the Fine Arts program at the University of Houston.
He has a background in printmaking, having worked as an assistant printmaker with Penny Cerling Etching Studio and more recently worked with Burning Bones Press. Villegas has taught in Houston, with The Writers In The Schools (WITS) Program as a visiting artist and also at the Glassell School of Art. He has been written about in several publications and featured in Gulf Coast magazine.

In 1990 his work was selected by Edward Albee for a group show at Hiram Butler Gallery called What I Found in Houston. Since then Villegas has exhibited frequently around Texas. He has exhibited in institutions such as the Meredith Long Gallery and his work is included in the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, as well as in several private and corporate collection. This will be Marco’s third time exhibiting at Zoya Tommy Gallery.

Marco Villegas: Immigrant Waves opened to the public on Friday, April 21st, 2017. The exhibition will be on view at Zoya Tommy Gallery through June 3rd, 2017.

Zoya Tommy Gallery is committed to exhibiting artwork that reflects the fascinating culture of today’s society as well as offering competing ideas about contemporary art using a variety of themes.