Prodigy Diego Gonzalez Transforms Ancient Art of ‘Body Painting’

diegoDiego Gonzalez is a homegrown prodigy in the forefront of transforming the ancient art of body painting as a self-taught airbrush artist. Growing up in north Hammond and LakeStation, Diego has taken this medium – once associated with war paint, and now with tattoos and graffiti – to a new and exciting level. “He is pioneering the use of body painting in which designs or pictures are airbrushed directly onto the body, in new ways,” said John Cain, South Shore Arts. He is transforming this traditional art form, utilizing it for fine art photography, fashion shoots, dance and music videos and other purposes. Starting as an 8-year-old scholarship student at the ArtCenter in Munster in 1995, Diego doggedly pursued art, walking all the way from Irving Elementary so he wouldn’t miss a class, even in the dead of winter. He started selling his art at a flea market in Gary and now it is sold worldwide through on-line sales. The arenas of photography fashion, music and film are benefiting directly from Diego’s art innovations. Diego also creates murals in the schools he attended, sharing his story of overcoming a low-income childhood to a life of “exciting adventures.” He leads students in mural-painting projects that inspire them to be engaged in school. His mantra: “Follow your dreams, believe in yourself and don’t give up.”

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