Published on August 6, 2012 by Amy
Fernando Padilla, Jr. (born July 29, 1958) is a Native American artist. His father was full blood San Felipe Pueblo and his mother is Navajo and Apache. Padilla is enrolled with the San Felipe Pueblo and is listed as half San Felipe Pueblo and half Navajo. Padilla was born in Huntington Park, California. He grew up in various places in New Mexico and Arizona due to his father’s job with the U.S. Forestry Service. He moved to Oklahoma in 1978 and still lives there to date. Best known for his painting of the Southwestern landscape and Pueblo life, Padilla also creates multi-dimensional artwork and sculpture.
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Padilla graduated from Rio Grande High School in Albuquerque, NM in 1976. He attended college in Albuquerque, NM and later transferred to Bethany Nazarene College in Bethany, Oklahoma in 1978.
“Spirit of the People” – Denver International Airport (Permanent Exhibit) Selected as one of ten artists by Western American Indian Chamber to create site-specific work for the Denver International Airport. Chosen to illustrate Native American life during the Anasazi Period, Padilla’s mural shows a panoramic view of a cliff dwelling community (1992).