Ernest Silva - Alberto Caro

Ernest Silva: Professor of Visual Art, University of CA, San Diego

Ernest Silva (b 1948) was co-creator and co-curator with Mark Quint of inSite92, a bi-national exhibition of site specific work in San Diego and Tijuana. INSITE has brought attention to border issues, the artists of Tijuana and San Diego, and international artists who have been invited to comment on the nature of the border. In 1994 Silva was commissioned to create public art projects at Children's Museum San Diego and the Casa de la Cultura in Tijuana. The Rain Houses (a new version opened in 2008) functioned as a means to facilitate a conversation between the children of San Diego and Tijuana through the exchange of stories, poems, and paintings. Silva also acted as an advisor to the Youth Wellness Collaborative Community Pediatrics, UCSD, with Dr Philip Nader. These activities facilitated use of creative practices to initiate conversations between teens and health care professionals that lead to programs that included: Kids and Violence; Teen Sexuality/Unwanted Pregnancy; and Smoking. Silva is a Professor of Visual Art at the University of California, San Diego. He is an accomplished artist whose work has been shown in numerous one-person shows in the US and Europe and is in numerous important public collections. Silva was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts in Painting and is a San Diego Art Prize Recipient.

What is your vision of the future of the Visual arts for San Diego?

"Being a studio artist and a teacher, I always think about the visual arts as the contrast and conversation between the individual and collective. Visual art is a means for the individual working in isolation to reflect on the world as they see it. Art in the community is the place where that singular vision gets internalized, questioned and discussed by whoever is interested - a free floating populist conversation, the only requirement to enter is curiosity and passion. So I'd like to see more art in K-12, more art classes on the community level, more exhibitions in the college and university system, more museum exhibitions and more support and patrons for existing institutions that reach out to all the neighborhoods of San Diego."