Meet the artist behind Oak Cliff Cultural Center’s Virgin of Guadalupe shows

Jose Vargas began curating a group art show dedicated to the Virgin of Guadalupe at the Oak Cliff Cultural Center more than 20 years ago.

He took this year off from that — there’s no Virgin of Guadalupe show this December — but instead he’s offering a show of his own paintings, spanning from the late 1960s to the present.

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Vargas, who also curates the annual El Corazón art exhibit at the Bath House Cultural Center, was born and raised in West Dallas and has lived in Oak Cliff for decades.

The show, Retro-Matico, includes painting, photography and assemblage and runs through Jan. 12. Vargas says he took a 30-year break from painting to focus on photography and curation. But he picked up his brushes again about 11 years ago.

“These days I get so many freaking ideas for art that I just don’t have time to do it all,” he says. “I like to work in series, and sometimes I have to put those on the shelf so I can move onto the next project.”

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