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Diego Perez: Shattering rules

By Vicki Hillhouse

Diego Perez is what you’d get if you crossed Caravaggio with acid humor.

His paintings start with real aspects of everyday life and writhe into his humorous or ironic twists — all in an oil paint tradition fused with dramatic light.

“I love the classic art,” he says. “I grew up with the Baroque style and Renaissance style, because you have to first learn the rules in order to break them.”

Also a muralist, his piece on the southern exterior at The Showroom on Colville uses the monarch to symbolize migration.

Perez, an immigrant from Mexico City, earned his bachelor’s degree at La Esmeralda, the National School of Painting, Sculpture and Printmaking, where Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo once taught.

“When I was young, I used to work with my grandfather in business,” he says. “But I was like, ‘No, I’m going to go do something.’ I love to make art, and I am gonna sacrifice these kinds of jobs in order to follow my dreams.”

Watch a video to learn more about Diego Perez by clicking here!