Current & Upcoming Exhibits

The gallery is open Thursday – Sunday, Noon – 5pm, during exhibitions. Admission is free to the public.

Gasmask, 2017

Pancho Jimenez
October 6 – November 4, 2017
Reception: Friday, October 6, 7-9pm

The Olive Hyde Art Gallery in Fremont brings to you yet another magnificent show featuring Francisco “Pancho” Jiménez, artist, sculptor, and instructor, who has been practicing and teaching at Santa Clara for almost two decades. He earned his B.A. degree from Santa Clara University, graduating with a double major in Studio Art and History, followed by an M.F.A. in Sculptural Ceramics from San Francisco State University.

Having a background both in art and history, Jiménez is greatly influenced by ancient art and artifacts found in the architectural ruins of Mesoamerica. He is fascinated by their symbols and hieroglyphs, which lend themselves to various interpretations. He is also “intrigued by their mystery of meaning,” and attempts to capture that mystery in his art, in an effort “to bring that eternal presence of the past to the present, to inspire reflection on contemporary time and place.”

Pancho Jiménez became interested in ceramics and sculpting at a very young age, after realizing that he had a passion for it and could excel more in art than in any other academic subject. He chose to work with clay, not only because of its artistic and pragmatic use from the very beginning of human history but also for its malleability and versatility.” For Jiménez, the simple shapes of geometry – circles, triangles, and squares, that he draws from ancient art forms, constitute the basis of a universal visual language that is timeless.

Pony Tail, 2017

Jiménez had to change course mid-way through his career. His earlier work, inspired by pre-Columbian art, was characterized by meticulously carved patterns on large geometric ceramic sculptures, often monumental in scale. This creative process took a toll and eventually led to a repetitive motion injury, forcing him to move from a reductive approach to an additive one.

He began repurposing commercial clay molds representative of their time periods. Each of these forms, used for “tchotchkes or decorative arts” revive memories, associations from the past, having different meanings for different people based on individuals’ experiences. “Melting into one another, these images suggest a dreamlike state,” Jiménez says, where ideas and emotions come in and out of focus. He “recontexualized” these forms into simple shapes, evoking emotional response from his viewers as they explore “the elusiveness of dreams and memory” and their interpretations.

Over the years, Jiménez’s vocabulary has evolved, with a definite shift in his style, yet maintaining the inherent meaningfulness. The original fascination with symbols derived from the ancient culture, is now supplemented by inspiration from contemporary lifestyle. In his series “Biographies”, he focuses on the individuals, “who they are and what events, concerns, experiences, and memories may have shaped them”. His more recent works speak of current world issues. The series “Weapons” elicits reflection on the violence and the tragic loss of human life that is ongoing in the present times.

Jiménez’s work has been exhibited extensively in the San Francisco Bay Area and nationally. His solo exhibition “Excavations and Interpretations” at the Triton Museum of Art last year was immensely successful. Three of his pieces were sold at the opening night to become part of the permanent collections at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento, the Autry Museum in Los Angeles, and the Triton Museum in Santa Clara. It was an unprecedented event.

Ball of Faces, 2015

He has been featured in Ceramics Monthly and numerous publications including, “The Ceramic Design Book”, “Extruded Ceramics” and “500 Ceramic Sculptures.” Jiménez is currently a Senior Lecturer at Santa Clara University where he has been teaching Ceramics since 1999. When asked what drives him to do this work, he says “there’s something magical about creating something that has never existed before.”

We invite you to come witness his work first-hand and meet the artist at a reception on Friday, October 6th, at 7:00 pm. The exhibition will remain open until November 4th, 2017.