Mónica Aíssa Martínez’s calling as an artist was enhanced by her background; she was a member of a creative family and, she has recalled, “was surrounded all my life by artisans, actresses, writers, musicians, and teachers.” Her parents encouraged her creative pursuits and taught her about her cultural background. Even so, Martínez felt a sense of isolation and separateness as a child. Others explained this to her as being a result of her minority status, and, as a Hispanic living in El Paso, she initially regarded it as a condition of her displaced Hispanic heritage. Because her minority status was compounded by being a woman, she also understood it as a women’s issue. Ultimately she came to believe that her feeling of separateness was actually a more universal condition: “I am not sure it is specifically a minority issue; I think it is a human issue.” This led her to the belief that the human race is bonded in spirit, a theme expressed in much of her art. Martínez places great emphasis on the importance of education in her career: “I have been influenced by numerous teachers and by the process of teaching itself.” She earned her B.F.A. at the University of Texas, El Paso, in 1986 and her M.F.A. at New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, in 1991.

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Alchemical Action
2000|Lithograph|30"x16.75"| Edition of 100

©2000 Segura Publishing Co.
Mónica Aíssa Martínez