How does living on the border affect you as an artist?
“I think the fact that I grew up in Tijuana, more than living/working in a border town has had a huge impact on me, I don’t know if I would’ve become an artist if i had grown up somewhere else. This city has a strange and positive energy, something I can’t find anywhere else, there is something very special in its chaos, its people and its weird dynamics. This is something I’ve always been grateful for, ever since I’ve had the opportunity of traveling to other bordertowns: Tecate, Mexicali, Nogales, Ciudad Juarez … and noticed this is something you cant find there, at least I can’t.
Now to answer your question, I feel I have the best of both worlds here, from the developed world i get to experience (or at least have some contact) to its of life, education (formal and informal), technology and ideas, also I’m located only 2 hours away from one of the worlds culture capitals (pop and art, LOS ANGELES), and here I get to live/work/create with all the freedom in the world, which I think might be the reason why artists from this region have always been influencers internationally.”
Julio M. Romero, born in Mexicali in 1981, is a multidisciplinary artist that explores the boundaries between photography, video and sculpture, examining the overproduction of images, pop culture elements and the sociopolitical impact of social media, by documenting everyday situations, and transmuting them in visual testimonies of the impact of consumerist societies.
His professional formation includes workshops with artists such: Yvonne Venegas, Luis Felipe Ortega, Javier Ramírez Limón and specialized courses at national and international institutions such as San Francisco Art Institute in San Francisco CA, the Visual Arts Academy in Mexico City and RI Institute in Tijuana Mexico.
He has exhibited in Canadá, China, USA and Spain in productions that include the “10th annual Border Film Week”, at the TransBorder Institute, University of San Diego, San Diego, C.A., (2016), GLOCAL REVIEW, at CECUT , Tijuana, Mèxico , (2015) , “ Landscapes, seascapes and cityscapes ”, at Pacific Art League, Palo Alto, C.A., (2014), “Playas Lado B”, at Steppling Art Gallery, Calexico, CA (2015). His work has received several awards and recognition such as: Acquisition prize at the XIV Northwesth Visual Arts Biennial, Mèxico, (2013), Honorific Mention at the International Photography Awards, in Los Angeles CA, Acquisition prize at the 5th National Visual Arts Biennial “Miradas” Mèxico, (2012) and the prestigious Young Creators Grant by the National Fund for the Arts Mèxico, (2012).
His work is part of the following collections: CODET foundation, the Elías Fontes Collection, and Universidad Iberoamericana.
Julio currently lives and works in his hometown Tijuana, Mexico.
All photos 2016 © Stefan Falke www.stefanfalke.com