Future HFOT home recipient Army SGT Mario Lopez is hosting a Veteran art show called Beyond Service: An Exhibition of Artworks by Veterans for the month of November at Bihl Haus Arts in San Antonio.
Art was a large part of Mario’s life until August 2005 when he was severely injured while serving in Iraq. Following an improvised explosive device (IED) blast, SGT Lopez sustained burns to 50 percent of his body; lost his sight in his right eye; and lost his right arm (his dominant one), and four fingers on his left hand. At first, Mario thought he would never paint again after his injury. In July 2011, he picked-up a paint brush with his left hand, started making strokes across the canvas, and has not stopped since.
Mario’s inspiration for his work mainly comes from his faith and his surroundings. “I paint anything that I see that I feel the rest of the world should know about. Every artist has to have that creative courage,” he says.
Mario’s art show consists of Veterans who have served in various branches of the military during the Vietnam War and operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Featured artists include Guy Banta, MD, Gerardo “Ghost” Casares, Brandi Hartigan, Katherine Hopkins, Paul Kahl Jr., George Lamson, Natalie Lopez, Roger Price, Lionel Sosa, Cody Vance, Roy Villarreal, and Michael Wright. The exhibition also introduces selected works created by Veterans enrolled in the new Bihl Haus Forward Arts! program taught by Russell Stephenson.
The opening reception is Friday, Nov. 8, 2019, from 5:30-8:30 p.m. There will be a poetry and prose reading on Nov. 23, 2019, at 2 p.m. and a closing reception and panel discussion with Mario Lopez, Cody Vance, and other guests on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2019, at 2 p.m. All events will be at Bihl Haus Arts, 2803 Fredericksburg Rd., San Antonio, TX 78201.