Tuesday, April 16 will be the last day for the Malecón Sculpture Walking Tours for this season, which is the seventh year for this free tour. As has been the case every Tuesday morning at 9:30 since this season’s tours started on November 15th, no reservations are necessary and one must only show up at the Millennium sculpture next to the Hotel Rosita at the north end of the Malecón.
The tour was created by, and is guided by Galeria Pacifico owner, Gary Thompson, who has 34 years experience in the Vallarta art scene and who knows personally many of the artists who created the sculptures on the tour. This includes Mathis Lidice, the nom d’plum of Fernando Baños, who created—and talks about—the first sculpture on the tour, Millennium. At this sculpture chairs are provided by Marcelo Alcaraz of the Hotel Rosita, and free handouts with information on the sculptures are made available by Sandra Cesca of Learn Vallarta. Other information sheets about the Huichol Indians and their artistic symbols that have been recreated in pebbles in the pavement of the new Malecón are provided by Kevin Simpson of the Peyote People and Colectika Galleries. Kevin also walks along during the first half of the tour explaining each symbol encountered along the way.
Although the tour lasts around two hours in total, Thompson looks for opportunities for people to sit in the shade near each sculpture whenever possible. The tour ends at Galeria Pacifico’s second floor location at Aldama 174, less than two blocks from the Malecón. Guests are given complimentary beverages and the opportunity to meet and talk to Jim Demetro, the artist who created the “Dancers of Vallarta” sculpture on the extension of the Malecon and the “Woman Washing Clothes” in front of the Molino de Agua Condominiums. Jim talks about his creations and shows the model for the new sculpture, currently known as the “Donkey Project,” that he is preparing to donate to Puerto Vallarta.
Although the tour is free, a no-pressure opportunity is given to make a donation to Vallarta’s Biblioteca Los Mangos public library, an institution also serving as a community center but receiving absolutely no funding from any branch of the government, and thus heavily dependent on donations and other fund raising efforts. Donations generated by the Malecón Sculpture Tour amounted to around $2,700 US dollars for Biblioteca Los Mangos last season. More information on the tour may be obtained at GaleriaPacifico.com, by calling (322) 222 1982 or by visiting the gallery from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM, Monday through Saturday.
Source: Gary Thompson