On Thursday, April 21, 2022, TFCU celebrated the Grand Re-Opening of their Rojas Branch with a ribbon cutting provided by the El Paso Chamber, and an unveiling of their art collaboration with local talent. The art collaboration will extend into TFCU branch lobbies across the city, featuring photography from Jorge Salgado, and unique artwork from Christin Apodaca, Patrick Gabaldon, and Tino Ortega. The art created for each branch displays influences of the surrounding area uniquely portrayed by the artists style. Learn more about the individuals who contributed to this art collaboration below:
A native of Aurora, Illinois, Salgado moved to El Paso when he was 12 years old. Following his graduation at Americas HS, Salgado graduated from UTEP with a degree in multimedia journalism. He is formally the staff photographer at El Paso Inc. and is the team photographer for the El Paso Chihuahuas. In his free time, you can catch him flying his drone. Salgado is an FAA-certified drone pilot and loves capturing El Paso’s beauty from ground and from the sky.
Patrick Gabaldon was born and raised in the Sun City of El Paso, Texas. His passion in art began after returning home to the vibrant color and vast expanse of the desert sky. His time away gave him a new perspective on the often forgotten west Texas desert. Gabaldon took his new found inspiration and made it his quest to show others his colorful interpretation of the borderland. Attorney by day and artist by night, Gabaldon quickly rose to local prominence with multiple exhibits across El Paso and features in print and digital media. Today, it is difficult not to find Gabaldon’s work on display across the city. His work has been exhibited in restaurants, art galleries, the El Paso International Airport, Southwest University Ballpark, the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) and even as stickers on laptops and water bottles. The bright tones that have become synonymous with Gabaldon’s work illuminate the cross border culture he attributes as the inspiration behind his painting.
He and his wife, Monica Alvillar (CEO, CFO etc. SHE DOES IT ALL!), have now made it their intention to give back to their community through art and their small business. They remain fierce advocates of their home town of El Paso, its culture and people.
Artist Albert (Tino) Ortega is an autodidact that has been creating artwork for the past decade. During his career he has divulged in numerous mediums, allowing his artwork to conform into multiple styles. Tino has and continues to bring emphasis to the scenery and community of the southern border. The idea of expressing our similarities through our differences stems from his upbringing on
the border, situated in a geographic area laying between two countries, three states, and primarily two cities: El Paso and Ciudad Juárez. Depicting the multi cultural people and places of the border helps illustrate the idea of togetherness. This idea of connectivity, exposed in Tino’s work allows the viewer to embrace others’ differences.
Christin Apodaca’s love for art has always been present in her life. The sketchbook kept in her studio from her middle school years is a reminder of just how far she has come. Her practice started with drawing and other dry mediums, naturally leading her to try painting that ultimately influenced her decision to attend UTEP and UNM in Albuquerque to focus her studies in art and major in oil painting. In the last 5 years, she has been able to transform her love of ‘making’ into a career. Her unique style of black and white line work with pops of color and Chihuahuan desert plants can be found across our city as well as in Austin, Texas and Las Cruses, New Mexico. As a female creator, she shares her point of view by spotlighting female figures and honoring every woman who views her work. She looks forward to days of traveling the world and leaving her mark with murals in the cities she visits.