Born in 1951 - Native American artist Miquel Martinez: With long-time ties to Taos, New Mexico, he is known for modernist oil pastel paintings of women, many of them Hispanic looking, whose faces fill almost the entire canvas.
Martinez was born and raised near the old Taos Plaza to a family that goes back three generations in that area. Martinez' father died when he was age three, and his mother raised him and his brothers and sisters. Martinez first took art lessons at the Stables Art Center where he won prizes and then crafted jewelry with his brother. Study with local artist Ray Vinella inspired Miguel Martinez to become a full-time artist. Although Martinez primarily paints portraits, he also works in bronze, ceramic, and oil, and his work incorporates his research into times when the Spanish first arrived in New Mexico. Miquel Martinez does not use models; the subjects come from his imagination.