Hilario Gutierrez faced the monolithic stone temples of Monument Valley, Arizona on New Years Day, 1994, and acknowledged, for the first time, his true nature. He returned home two days later and began to paint. As an Arizona native with a rich ethnic heritage, Hilario always identified with the spirit of the American Southwest. This unique identity became evident even as he produced his first paintings. Within a year of beginning to paint, Hilario was selling his work.
Hilario Gutierrez is a native of Phoenix, Arizona, and a second generation American. He boasts a rich ethnic heritage consisting of Mexican/Aztec and German from his mother’s family, and Yaqui Indian and Austrian from his father’s family.
After graduating from high school Hilario joined the U.S. Navy, and became a veteran of the Vietnam War. Upon leaving the Navy in 1972, Hilario took various art and photography classes at Phoenix College, where he studied under renowned photographer Allen Dutton and gained the tools to become a professional photographer.
In the mid-Seventies Hilario studied at the United Academy of Beauty, where he obtained a cosmetology license. For the next twenty years he continued to attend various classes in the art and science of hair color, which deepened his understanding of color basics. But it wasn’t until 1994 that he experienced his artistic revelation in Monument Valley and began the serious pursuit of painting.
When he’s not in his studio creating art, Hilario visits his primary inspiration, Nature, by driving the back roads and hiking the remote trails of Arizona. He expresses an interest in experimenting with metalworking and ceramics, both media to which he has not yet applied his unique vision.
Currently, Hilario explores the diversity of subjective and non-subjective images combined with distinctive surfaces and shapes to reveal the internal life of his emotions and his art. His explorations draw the viewer into his world and invite wonder, remembrance and awakening.