Although Celia Álvarez Muñoz always was attracted to art and loved drawing as a child, she came to her art career after completing her college education, marrying, and raising children. She has described herself in her youth in El Paso as a typical 50s bobby soxer, going to parties on both sides of the border. Her art education was initially restricted to a couple of art classes in high school, after which she enrolled at the University of Texas, El Paso, where she earned a B.A. in 1964. This was followed by teaching and then years of travel, as her husbands career with the Federal Highway Administration kept the family constantly on the move. By the time they returned to Texas in the late 1970s, Álvarez Muñoz had determined to pursue the study and creation of art. She was also committed to using her art to express her concerns over social issues, in particular those related to the border territory of her early life. She enrolled at North Texas State University in Denton, studied with Vernon Fisher, and received her M.F.A. in 1982. Soon she began lecturing, consulting, conducting workshops, and creating and exhibiting her artworks.
In her serigraph print also titled Tolido, Álvarez Muñoz layers yet another communication system printmakingonto the complex of overlapping systems of her installation. Here her rendition of El Grecos painting breaks out of its rectangular confines, its flames billowing up and out from the humble little house still confined in its circle.