“A man of few words but tremendous talent, Francisco Quintero can possibly best be described as Vallarta’s Michelangelo,” say Joe and Claire Guarniere of Galleria Dante, which represents his powerful works. “He is one of the most talented sculptors I have ever seen,” adds Joe.
Although Francisco moved here from Mazatlan as a very young boy, he proudly considers himself Vallartense. His father was a fisherman who trolled the waters between Mazatlan and Vallarta and Francisco grew up loving fishing as much as sculpting. And to this day he can often be seen on the Los Muertos pier, fishing rod in hand. Currently, he is completing his “gift to Vallarta,” an intricately detailed, life-size sculpture of a native fisherman reeling in his catch called “El Pescador,” which will be bronzed and permanently displayed on the new Malecón extension.
First expressing himself artistically through the natural clay he found when playing for countless memorable hours on Isla Río Cuale - long before the island was developed, as it is today - he later began drawing and painting. And at 14 he enrolled in an art program at the University of Guadalajara, subsequently honing the skills learned there by working as an apprentice sculptor and collaborating on some large sculptures still displayed in that city’s main plaza.
Eager to begin working independently, Francisco then moved to Colima where he produced unique art influenced by Henry Moore and Zuniga and taught at the university. But in 1991 he felt drawn back to Puerto Vallarta “para morirme en paz.” (To die in peace.)
So for the past 11 years he has been teaching appreciative students at the municipal art school on the island where it all began, his creative output emanating from his wonderful childhood memories.
Watch for the unveiling of “El Pescador” in April of 2006.