Born in Santa Fe, descendent from generations of New Mexican ranchers, Gill-Tapia's many life experiences have culminated in his current paintings: THE MISSION SERIES.
A precocious talent in drawing, photography, weaving, and ceramics opened the door for him, to a four year long association with his mentor, Belgian weaver and painter, Maud Henon. Myriad studio hours, artistic guidance, and numerous trips to the studios and museums of Brussels, Bruges, Amsterdam and Paris while under her tutelage, further developed his skills, and firmly planted him on this lifetime path.
Ten years in New York City followed. Classes in painting, drawing and anatomy from the masters at The Art Student's League of New York, The New York Academy, and the National Academy of Art. Gill-Tapia served as monitor, as well as teaching classes to both youths, and adults during this period. He later maintained a studio in the city, taught privately and showed at the Javit's Center, The Red Hook Gallery, The Brooklyn Waterfront Society, and Soho's New Century Artists.
Today, Gill-Tapia has returned to his native Sangre de Christo mountains, and lives and paints in his beloved Santa Fe. His Gallery, Red Dot Fine Art, has represented numerous emerging regional and national artists, and also served as a showcase for his multiple talents.
His century old familiar roots, tracing back to Madrid, bind him to those architectural traditions of the great masterpieces of Hispanic indigenous art: The Churches of rural New Mexico. He has photographed and sketched them devotedly, eventually evolving his present semi-abstract, yet three dimensional style. For emphasis and contrast, he places these often fragmentary, often complete images against stark monochromatic skies.
"My Mission Series paintings are now the result of thoughts and ideas which I have developed over the last years. The Mission Churches of New Mexico exert a tremendous influence and power over the Hispanic communities which survive here. I try to reflect that power in the monumentality of my compositions, and the force and brilliance of my use of color."
Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2007